Urgent concerns about escalating levels of violence across CAR
The UN Security Council has unanimously voted to boost the presence of peace keepers in the Central African Republic (CAR) to enable better protection of civilians. In a joint press release ACORD along with human rights and aid groups welcome this decision.
This follows an open letter sent to the Security Council on 6 November 2017 by a coalition of 28 local and international organisations requesting a stronger mandate on protection of civilians, and deployment of more peace keepers who are well-trained, properly equipped and willing to act when people are caught up in conflict.
ACORD is present in CAR since 2009. Following two years of conflict, triggered by the March 2013 coup in the Central African Republic (CAR), a new constitution was approved via referendum and presidential elections passed off relatively peacefully in late 2015. The priorities of the newly elected president, Mr Touadera, are national reconciliation and disarmament of armed groups. However, the situation has remained volatile with a climate of mistrust persisting throughout the country and community-level social cohesion and communication across faith lines remaining a serious challenge to national reconciliation. Rather than showing signs of improvements, the developments in the country have been troubling. Since the beginning of 2017 the situation in the country has deteriorated even further to the point that current levels of insecurity exceed those of 2014 when the UN peacekeeping mission was established, as does the severity of the humanitarian crisis now gripping the country.
“We are gravely concerned about the need to restore conditions that allow the safe operations of humanitarian and development actors”, says Sophie Havyarimana, ACORD Head of Programme Operations and Development. “Ensuring protection of civilians is necessary also to help create conditions that would allow the revitalization of the political process”, she adds.
To create safer condition to establish local administration, for internally displaced people to return and be properly served, for more tolerance and peaceful life in communities , ACORD has been working towards social cohesion and community social peace promotion. This has been hampered by the recurring insecurity and fear. Delivery of our humanitarian and livelihoods response is also extremely difficult in the context of insecurity.
The international community has a responsibility to protect the population against atrocities. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres visited CAR earlier this month and is supported by the international CAR campaign coalition that ACORD is a part of, in that the rest of the world must not lose sight of the forgotten crisis gripping this Central African country. CAR topped the list of neglected displacement crises for 2017.
To understand more about the historical background for the CAR crisis, read a joint study of ACORD and CCFD-Terre Solidaire entitled “Societies caught in the conflict trap. Regional research findings, Chad, Central African Republic, Sudan, South Sudan”.
Get report in English or French version.
Download joint NGO letter to the UN security Council on #CARvote, 6 November 2017, in English or French.