Please see below statement from Refugees International Senior Advocate for West and Central Africa Alexandra Lamarche:
“Refugees International is deeply alarmed by increasing violence across the Central African Republic surrounding the country’s December 27 presidential election. Early this morning, hundreds of rebels attacked the capital, Bangui. The assault follows weeks of repeated rebel advances on key cities across the country. Without swift action, the humanitarian consequences of the spreading insecurity will be dire.
Central African forces, with support from international allies, and UN Peacekeepers, have thwarted many of the rebel incursions in recent weeks. But armed groups continue to wreak havoc, and Central African civilians have been left traumatized by the surge in violence. Nearly 62,000 people have been displaced internally, and more than 30,000 people have sought refuge in neighboring countries.
Refugees International is concerned that the presence of insurgents across the country is severely limiting humanitarian access and interrupting trade routes. Aid groups are struggling to access populations in need, and necessities are quickly becoming scarce. Humanitarian needs are skyrocketing with each passing day. By the end of last year, more than half of the country’s population already required humanitarian assistance. Rebel groups and armed forces must allow unrestricted access to those in need.
Refugees International calls for the international community to immediately bolster aid funding to the Central African Republic and neighboring refugee-hosting countries, and to prioritize the protection of civilians in its humanitarian and peacekeeping response.”
For more information or to arrange an interview with Alexandra, please contact Refugees International Director of Communications Sarah Sheffer at firstname.lastname@example.org or +1 202 540 7029.