Approximately 10,000 internally displaced people (IDP) in the Central African Republic (CAR) have been forced to take refuge in a hospital in Batangafo, according to a report released by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) on Thursday, August 10. The makeshift camp was set up two weeks after an IDP camp in Bangassou was attacked and several aid offices were robbed in two waves of violence that left 24 people dead and 17 injured in early August. MSF said it is able to provide basic health services but warned that the humanitarian situation was worsening in northern CAR.
On Tuesday, July 18, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) and other humanitarian aid groups warned that violence is increasing in CAR. According to UN officials, over 300 people have been killed and 100,000 displaced since May 2017.
Religious conflicts have ravaged CAR since December 2013. Clashes between various armed groups continue to be reported regularly despite the June 19 signing of an "immediate ceasefire" agreement between the CAR government and 13 out of the 14 rebel groups present in the country.
The capital Bangui has especially been gripped by deadly clashes between the Christian Anti-Balaka group and ex-Seleka Muslim militias. The conflict has led to hundreds of deaths, created almost 1 million internally displaced persons (IDPs), and pushed more than 500,000 people to seek refuge in the neighboring countries of Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Chad. On August 8, six Red Cross workers were killed in Bangassou, the first killing of a Red Cross worker in CAR since 2014.
Many Western governments advise against travel to CAR due to these and other security concerns. Travel should only be considered with proper security protocols in place.