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2 April 2014

The deteriorating security in the Central African Republic (CAR), especially in its capital city, Bangui, has triggered further displacement within the country and beyond its borders, a UN spokesman told reporters here Tuesday. "The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) expressed its concern today about the deterioration of the security situation in Bangui since the High Commissioner's recent visit, with at least 60 people killed since March 22," said Deputy Spokesperson for the Secretary-General Farhan Haq at the daily briefing.


2 April 2014

The Central African Republic (CAR) – torn apart since December by widespread conflict and killings of civilians by armed groups – is unravelling. The consequences are already catastrophic for many people. Almost the entire population is in desperate need of food. As the World Food Programme’s chief economist, I went to Bangui to analyse how the overall economy is affected, particularly the food sector, and where we are in terms of the humanitarian response. I was shocked by what I saw and how deep the crisis extends. It really doesn’t get much worse than this.


31 March 2014

Now Boda is the Central African Republic’s miniature Sarajevo, a once-wealthy town of diamond, gold and coffee traders, irrevocably marred by ethnic cleansing. Under the watchful eye of French peacekeepers, the Christians are trying to starve out the Muslims. Lorries carrying supplies from the Muslims of Bangui, who are also besieged, sometimes sneak through the anti-balaka checkpoints by tagging along behind convoys of French or African peacekeepers. An eagerly awaited shipment from the World Food Programme is expected today. But it’s not enough. Many of Boda’s Muslim children suffer from malnutrition.


28 March 2014

The executive director of the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) urges the international community to address the disaster in the Central African Republic (CAR) where hundreds of thousands have fled violence and instability to neighboring Cameroon, Chad and the Democratic Republic of Congo. “It is a crisis situation,” says Ertharin Cousin of WFP, who recently returned from tours of the CAR and Cameroon. The WFP executive director says the influx of refugees is creating a regional crisis because of food shortages and lack of resources.


28 March 2014

The U.N. World Food Program, which operates in war-torn nations such as Syria, can’t distribute food within the camp because it’s too dangerous, said Ertharin Cousin, executive director of the World Food Program. She recently returned from a week-long visit to the Central African Republic and could see the camp from her airplane window. Some of the people who live there, including armed fighters involved in the country’s conflict, get violent when food, water or anything marketable arrives, Cousin explained, so it’s too risky for the residents and the aid workers. “When we go into those kinds of areas, we make ourselves prey for those who are participating in the conflict.


26 March 2014

The UN says almost a million people are displaced within Central African Republic, or seeking safety in neighbouring Chad and Cameroon, representing nearly a quarter of the population. During a World Food Programme visit, executive director Ertharin Cousin warned: "The people who have been affected by the crisis here in the Central African Republic are not only being forgotten, they are now being ignored and we cannot allow children to go hungry, we cannot miss the planting season while the world ignores the people of CAR."


24 March 2014

The European Union promised to send 1,000 troops, but the plan has reportedly been complicated by Ukraine’s uprising, as European countries want to keep their forces close to home.
Meanwhile, the humanitarian crisis in this impoverished nation of 4.5 million worsens by the day. The rainy season this month will bring disease and make many roads impassable. On Friday, after a two-day visit to CAR, the executive director of the World Food Programme said the food shortage is not only threatening CAR but its neighbours which harbour refugees. “It is not overstating the facts to say that CAR is teetering on the brink of a catastrophic humanitarian disaster,” Ertharin Cousin wrote in her blog.


24 March 2014

The UN food agency said Friday that the exodus of almost 300,000 people from the Central African Republic (CAR) is creating a regional crisis in neighboring countries which are already short of food. Ertharin Cousin, executive director of the World Food Program (WFP), said while the international community urgently needs to step up and address the disaster in the CAR, support is also required for the regional refugee crisis. Cousin just finished a visit to the CAR's northwestern town of Bossangoa.


21 March 2014

Ertharin Cousin, director of the UN World Food Programme (WFP), is urging the world to help the starving people of the Central African Republic. Speaking from the war-torn country she warns, "We must not wait until pictures of skeletal, severely underweight, children document our failure and neglect." For what Cousin and her staff are witnessing is a humanitarian tragedy.


21 March 2014

“I visited Bangui as well as Bossangoa, which is one of the largest cities in the country [Central African Republic]. In Bossangoa I had the opportunity to meet with the Bishop who is housing Catholics, Christian refugees, and the Iman, who is housing all the Muslim refugees. (..) Ninety-four per cent of farmers told us that they have no seeds; they have no tools. (..) We are coming onto the rainy season. This will make it impossible for WFP to move food onto the roads and into these different communities because the roads are impassable during the rainy season.”