- The UN has said that the escalating unrest in Central African Republic could prolong the humanitarian crisis as thousands of civilians are fleeing their homes to the neighbouring countries for security.
The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said the violence that has wrecked the country for more than a decade could also jeopardize progress towards power-sharing between the government and rebel groups.
CAR has since August 2008 engaged rebels into peace talks for the possibility of the formation of a unity government, but rebel groups and opposition figures have in a number of times walked out of the meeting accusing the government of pushing forward a proposed amnesty law to protect President Francois Bozize's men.
According to the UN statement, the latest fighting in north-west of the CAR, between government troops and an emerging rebel forces, known as the Convention of Patriots for Justice and Peace (CPJP), have led some 6,400 people to escape into the bush, while over 9,000 others have fled across the border to Chad.
In the past ten years, over 300,000 people have been displaced by violence in the country, according to the UN reports.
“Renewed clashes this January across the country’s north have forced nearly 24,000 to flee. While efforts are under way to help the refugees, the government forces have limited access to those in need ,” the UN said.
According to OCHA, below one-quarter of the $116 million needed for this year’s Coordinated Aid Programme (CAP) has been funded, with critical shortfalls in key areas such as health and protection.
CAR, one of the world's poorest nations, faces a financial crisis as well as insecurity in the northern territories, held hostage by rebels, bandits and highwaymen fighting with government troops ever since Mr Bozize's victory in presidential elections in 2005.
CAR has suffered through decades of coups and military revolts since gaining independence in 1960.
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