Friday, February 24, 2006

What's going on the northern Central African Republic?

It's often in humanitarian circles that when there are serious problems in remote areas, often the first indicator to the outside world is refugee flows. By that standard, something fishy is happening in parts of the Central African Republic (CAR) but it's not exactly clear what.

The UN's IRIN service reports that: Men, women and children from the Central African Republic are continuing to flee into Chad daily, with at least 4,000 pouring in so far this month to escape violence that refugees say has killed 50 people in February alone, and shows no signs of subsiding, the UN refugee agency said.

The UN News Service indicates that: The northern party of the [Central African] republic is becoming increasingly volatile and refugees report they are being attacked by bandits, government forces who suspect they are supporting rebel groups and rebel groups who raid their villages for food and cattle and recruit young men.

The UN indiciated that already some 43,000 refugees from the CAR are already being taken care of in southern Chad.

The BBC's sources tell them of a nascent rebellion against the CAR government of General Francois Bozize.

The region is already unstable, with genocide in the eastern Sudanese region of Darfur, political domestic turmoil in Chad, hundreds of thousands of Darfur refugees in Chad and border tension between Chad and Sudan.

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