Access to rural Central African Republic difficult, U.N. says

Jan. 31, 2014 at 3:48 PM
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UNITED NATIONS, Jan. 31 (UPI) -- Unless security improves in Central African Republic, humanitarian agencies will not reach people outside the capital of Bangui, the United Nations warned.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs noted in a statement Thursday 425,000 of the 825,000 people displaced from their homes lived outside Bangui, and targeted attacks against civilians, looting and the infiltration of armed elements in some displacement camps has severely limited humanitarian agencies to provide assistance.

Thousands of people have been killed in CAR's crisis, which began a year ago when Seleka rebels, largely Muslim, launched attacks against the government and have been fighting against mainly Christian anti-Balaka militias.

The U.N. Children's Fund said earlier in January more than 6,000 child soldiers may be involved in the conflict.

The United Nations and its partners seek $152 million to fund an emergency intervention plan in the country, which would provide relief and protection to 1.2 million people in the next three months, the statement said.

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