Humanitarian aids for the displaced people in Central African Republic

Child from the tribe of Baku Child from the tribe of Baku © Photo by USO in iStock

This article is a brief presentation of humanitarian aid processes and updates concerning displaced people affected by violence in CAR

This report is written based on the reference of the News and Press Release document from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and data source of the United Nations Office for the Coordination and Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

The objective of this report is to provide an overview and updates on the current situation related to the humanitarian response to violence in the Central African Republic (CAR), as well as displaced and vulnerable populations affected by it.  

The conflict in the CAR caused displacement of approximately 129,000 people, who are now in precarious conditions. This situation has been exacerbated by no realistic prospects for return in the near future. The civilian population was the first victim of the renewed tensions and violence observed in the country since the end of year 2020. The tensions affected not only the civilians but also the humanitarian workers operating in the area, with the most incidents having occurred in Bossangoa. In addition, according to the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR), 45,000 newly arrived refugees were registered in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Cameroon, Chad and the Republic of Congo in December 2020 when the new wave of violence began ahead of the general elections. As far as the displaced population is concerned, the ongoing violence has particularly affected woman and girls, who are especially vulnerable to sexual violence and are in need of the protection cluster. The humanitarian assessment further showed that the most pressing needs include food, primary healthcare, water and sanitation, basic household items and shelters.

In early March 2021, the United Nations Office for the Coordination and Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported that essential supplies including foods and medicines carried by over 500 trucks sent by the UN and its partners are stuck at the border between Cameroon and the CAR, and the situation is worsen since fighting began on 17 December 2020. According to the data gathered by the UN (2021), almost 2.3 million people are likely to suffer from food shortage in the Central African Republic, out of whom children are the most vulnerable of all. In response, ICRC was the first organization to successfully send a first humanitarian convoy from Cameroon to the CAR with 135 tonnes of food. That amount was enough to feed 10,000 people displaced by violence. Yves Van Loo, the deputy head of ICRC in CAR, said that the response was the first humanitarian aid provided by the organisation in 2021 and reflected the principles of  International Humanitarian Law (IHL). 

Despite existing insecurities in many parts of the country, humanitarian actors have been scaling up their efforts to save lives and provide emergency response assistance for those who need it the most. With the support of the UN and international humanitarian actors, it was possible to conduct a rapid needs assessment under the lead of the United Nations Office for the Coordination and Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), food assistance or over 10,000 families organized by the World Food Programme (WFP), nutritional support by the NGOs Médecins d’Afrique (MDA) while Médecins du Monde (MDM) established a presence in Dékoa, to support access to health care and psychosocial services to survivors of sexual and Gender-Based Violence (GBV). Furthermore, humanitarians have been hard to access areas by helicopter since mid-December 2020, in order to deploy rapid assessments teams and deliver so many humanitarian aid logistics. In this critical situation, when humanitarian needs are as pressing as ever, urgent funding is needed to support the effective humanitarian response. 

In conclusion, the violence caused by the conflict in the Central African Republic resulted in the displacement of approximately 129,000 persons and at least 59 recorded incidents against humanitarian personnel and property since December 2020. Urgent humanitarian assistance and solidarity is much needed to support civilian victims of this conflict and to scale up humanitarian  efforts in this direction. As of 17 of March 2021, only 16% of the Humanitarian Response Plan for the Central African Republic was funded, with more funding urgently needed to support sustainable humanitarian actions.


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Author: Mery Ana Farida; Editor: Aleksandra Krol

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