Last Updated: Monday, 14 July 2014, 13:12 GMT

Central African Republic: thousands suffer the effects of armed violence in Bria

Publisher International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
Publication Date 10 November 2011
Cite as International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Central African Republic: thousands suffer the effects of armed violence in Bria, 10 November 2011, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4ebbd3b47.html [accessed 14 July 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is currently bringing aid to around a thousand families whose houses were destroyed or seriously damaged in clashes between two armed groups in the city of Bria in September.

"In many parts of the city, the damage is considerable. In all, over 700 houses are in ruins," said Céline Buvelot, an ICRC delegate working in the area. "Most residents had to flee the fighting as quickly as possible, and left practically all their belongings behind. Many were taken in by families in neighbourhoods that were less affected, but some had no choice but to seek refuge in the bush. Their situation is very difficult. We are providing them with supplies to meet their most urgent needs."

In partnership with the Central African Red Cross Society, the ICRC is distributing such essential items as tarpaulins, blankets, sleeping mats, basins, soap, jerrycans and kitchen utensils. In addition, after chlorinating some 50 wells, the ICRC is now repairing seven water pumps in the area of Bria that was hardest hit.

The north-east of the Central African Republic has been the scene of sporadic violence between armed groups for several months. As a result, several thousand civilians have been displaced and many houses and even entire villages have been destroyed.

"Unfortunately, in these hostilities there has been little regard for the physical well-being and the property of civilians," said Katharina Ritz, the head of the ICRC delegation in Bangui. "We remind all parties concerned of their obligation to spare civilians at all times."

Throughout the year, the ICRC has endeavoured to protect and assist people adversely affected by armed conflict in areas of north-eastern Central African Republic such as Tiringoulou, Ndélé and Akoursoulbak, as well as Bria.

The ICRC is an impartial, neutral and independent organization. Its exclusively humanitarian mission is to assist victims of armed conflict and other violence and to protect their lives and dignity.

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