Culture of fear grips Central African Republic

GENEVA, Switzerland, Aug. 13 (UPI) -- The United Nations said Tuesday it is "extremely concerned" about the state of lawlessness in the Central African Republic.

The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees said more than 200,000 people are internally displaced by conflict in CAR. The agency said more than 4,000 people fled the country to southern Chad since mid-July.


The rebel Seleka coalition is suspected committing war crimes since it toppled the government early this year.

The International Committee of the Red Cross said the situation in CAR is being ignored.

UNHCR spokesman Adrian Edwards said concerns were mounting following attacks on local U.N. staff members in Bangui, the capital city.

"UNHCR remains extremely concerned over the situation inside CAR, with continuing reports of lawlessness and insecurity in many areas," he said in a statement.

The International Criminal Court said last week it was examining reports of crimes against humanity committed in CAR.

Edwards said members of the civilian population have reported "widespread fear."

Access for humanitarian aid workers remains difficult.

"We are also appealing to public and private donors to support this forgotten crisis," he said Tuesday.

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