People displaced as a result of the conflict in Central African Republic (CAR) is currently put at nearly 900,000, including about 500,000 in Bangui, the capital, with 100,000 camping at the airport, according to the latest report of the African Union Commission (AUC) Chairperson, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, on the situation in the strife-ridden country.
The report, submitted to the Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the AU meeting here Wednesday at the level of heads of state and government, described the humanitarian situation in CAR as catastrophic, noting that about 60 percent of the internally displaced persons were children.
“The prevailing insecurity is making it difficult to deliver regular humanitarian assistance to the affected people,” the report, which was released Thursday, said, noting that aid agencies have appealed for the mobilisation of US$ 152 million to address the humanitarian needs over the next three months.
Meanwhile, the AUC has deployed an initial group of five human rights observers within the African-led led International Support Mission in CAR (MISCA)’s civilian component to enable the Mission to better document human rights violations and facilitate actions aimed at ensuring accountability.
“They have begun to collect initial information on violations of human rights in Bangui and will be deployed in the provinces as soon as possible,” said the report.
The Chairperson stressed that the perpetrators of human rights violations and other abuses must be identified and held accountable.
On disarmament, demobilization and reintegration efforts which go hand in hand with security reform, the report explained that two national coordination mechanisms which had been suspended due to the insecurity situation have been reactivated following the establishment of MISCA on 19 December, 2013.
These efforts have enabled the cantonment of 7,140 former Seleka elements in 14 sites around Bangui.
MISCA continues its advocacy for the finalisation of the cantonment of the former Seleka elements, including support for their sustenance at cantonment sites.
The AUC Chairperson has welcomed the election of Mrs. Catherine Samba-Panza as the CAR head of state for the transition and hailed “the sense of responsibility, maturity and commitment by the CAR actors on that occasion”.