Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


UN: C African Republic risks genocide

23 January 2014, 09:41

New York - The UN chief's special adviser on genocide prevention is warning of a "high risk of crimes against humanity and of genocide" in the Central African Republic.

Adama Dieng and other UN officials briefed the Security Council on Wednesday on the continuing and unprecedented violence between Christians and Muslims in one of the world's poorest countries.

They spoke of children being beheaded, entire villages burned and a complete breakdown of law and order, and they urged the deployment of more peacekeepers as soon as possible.

But they expressed hope at this week's election of an interim president who is the first female leader in the country's history, and at the $496m in humanitarian assistance newly pledged by international donors.

An untold number of people have been killed since a March 2013 coup by Muslim rebels, and the previous peace between Muslims and Christians in the largely rural, landlocked country has been shattered.

"The level of hatred between these communities shocked me," Dieng said, listing widespread reports of summary executions, mutilation and sexual violence among the "widespread and massive" human rights violations.

Restoring peace will be difficult "without addressing the current culture of impunity," he added.

The UN officials welcomed the approval by European Union foreign ministers this week of a potential joint military force of about 500 troops to assist the roughly 1 600 French troops and about 4 600 African troops trying to restore order.

Children and armed groups

The UN does not have a peacekeeping force in the country, but there is interest among Security Council members.

"There is a feeling that the situation has deteriorated to a point where it requires as much assistance ... as possible" from both the African force and the UN peace building office in the country, said Jordan's ambassador to the UN, Prince Zeid al Hussein.

Dieng and the other officials spoke after a visit to the Central African Republic last month as violence spiralled.

Among the numbers they shared:

—Nearly a million people displaced, about half of them children.

—As many as 6 000 children possibly associated with armed groups.

—About 100 000 people sleeping in the open at the airport at the capital, Bangui.

—Thousands of others hiding out in the forest. About 246 000 refugees.

Overall, more than half of the country's population has been affected by the violence, said Kyung-wha Kang, the UN's deputy emergency relief coordinator.

- AP


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
S Mbinya
Why he does not call your name

A slip of the tongue can happen just any time. Read more...

Submitted by
George Vodongo
Why Boniface Mwangi wants DP Ruto...

Photojournalist and activist Boniface Mwangi is now demanding for the Deputy President William Ruto’s tax returns. Read more...

Submitted by
Vincent Munga
Jambojet increases flight frequen...

Jambojet will increase its flights to Mombasa from 22 to 31 flights a week, while Kisumu, Eldoret and Ukunda will have a total of 20 flights per week each.  Read more...

Submitted by
George Vodongo
Al Shabaab attack Mandera hotel, ...

A total of 33 non-locals were in the hotel when the assault was launched.  Read more...

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
4 ways to handle your cheating ma...

He is cheating. How do you handle him?

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
Why do men choose second wives?

Why do men choose to have second wives?