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UN rights chief calls for quicker response to CAR humanitarian situation

English.news.cn   2014-03-21 04:01:19

UNITED NATIONS, March 20 (Xinhua) -- Despite the recent halt in large-scale violence in the crisis-riven Central African Republic (CAR), people are still being killed every day, the UN human rights chief Navi Pillay warned on Thursday, calling for quicker international response to the "dire" humanitarian situation in the country.

"Pillay said today that inter-communal hatred remains at a terrifying level in the Central Africa Republic," said deputy UN spokesman Farhan Haq here at a daily news briefing.

She said at a press conference in Bangui, capital of the CAR, that although large-scale killings of the type that took place in December and January appear to have halted for the time being, people continue to be killed on a daily basis.

Pillay also said that two districts of the capital -- PK 5 and PK 12 -- remained no-go zones, with trapped Muslim populations.

"Ms. Pillay stressed the need to restore law and order," Haq said. "She also said that there should be more visible efforts by national and local politicians and officials to ram home the message that human rights violations and rampant crime will no longer be tolerated; and that reconciliation is vital for everyone if the country is to recover."

The high commissioner was also deeply concerned by the slow response of the international community, including the under- funded aid effort.

Thousands of people are believed to have been killed, and 2.2 million, about half the population of the CAR, need humanitarian aid as a result of the conflict that began in December 2012, when mainly Muslim Seleka rebels launched attacks.

More than 650,000 people are still internally displaced, and over 290,000 have fled to neighboring countries in search of refuge from the conflict, which has taken on increasingly sectarian overtones as mainly Christian militias known as anti- Balaka (anti-machete) have taken up arms.

Around 15,000 Muslims are reportedly trapped in Bangui and other areas in the north, northwest and south of the country, protected by international forces, but nevertheless in an extremely dangerous and untenable situation.

Editor: yan
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