CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC – the pot still boils according to the UN

re posted from                                       Presstv.com

Fri Jul 8, 2016 11:53AM
United Nations peacekeepers patrol in Bangui, the Central African Republic, January 2, 2016. (AFP)
United Nations peacekeepers patrol in Bangui, the Central African Republic, January 2, 2016. (AFP)

Renewed violence in the Central African Republic has forced thousands of people to flee and seek refuge in Chad and Cameroon, the UN Refugee Agency says.

“The exodus began on June 12 when clashes erupted between livestock herders and local arable farmers in and around the northwest town of Ngaoundaye, Ouham Pende region,” the agency, also known as the UNHCR, said in a statement Friday.

It added that the agency had helped register 5,643 Central African refugees in Chad, in the villages of Sourouh and Mini next to the border; and 555 refugees had crossed to the village of Yamba in eastern Cameroon.

The UNHCR was already helping provide protection to 67,000 Central African refugees in Chad, and 260,000 in Cameroon, with an additional 415,000 people displaced inside the Central African Republic.

The UNHCR said the type of clashes it referred to typically take place when herders move their animals across the land. “This year,” the agency warned, “disturbingly, rival ex-Seleka and anti-Balaka militias have become involved.”

In March 2013, the Central African Republic plunged into chaos when President Francois Bozize was ousted by the mainly Seleka rebel alliance. The move triggered a series of deadly retaliatory attacks between the Seleka rebels and Christian vigilantes known as “anti-balaka.”

Over the past year, the chaos has calmed down significantly, but the refugees told the UNHCR workers they had seen “killings, kidnappings, looting and the torching of their homes.” Most of those fleeing were “exhausted, weak and hungry” and needed “urgent aid,” the refugee agency said.

The agency has appealed for USD 225.5 million to finance its operations linked to the Central African Republic in 2016. So far, however, the UNHCR has only received USD 24.7 million.

The United Nations currently has a peacekeeping mission stationed in the country under the name of MINUSCA.

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