Crisis in Central African Republic pushes thousands across bordersListen /
Aid agencies are reporting a growing number of refugees fleeing from the Central African Republic into neighbouring countries.
The United Nations refugee agency UNHCR says the number of refugees fleeing CAR has risen to over 37,000 over the past few weeks, the majority of them crossing the border into Chad, Cameroun and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
UNHCR says the flare-up of fighting in December last year and the take over of the government by rebel forces has displaced close to 175,000 people inside the country.
The agency says humanitarian needs for the refugees are significant as many fled with nothing and are being accommodated by local families who are also faced with extreme poverty.
Adrian Edwards from UNHCR says the refugees are scattered along a 600 kilometer border some in remote and hard to reach locations.
"Since December, 30,876 people have found asylum in northern DRC. Chad has meanwhile received 5,600 CAR refugees, and 1,024 now in Cameroun. We are working with the authorities in all three receiving countries to provide protection and assistance. Our teams across the region are registering the refugees, distributing aid, setting up emergency shelters, and developing new sites. We are also working with our humanitarian partners to provide health and education support wherever possible."
UNHCR says it was unable to provide adequate humanitarian assistance to those internally displaced inside CAR due to the volatile security situation in the country.
Patrick Maigua United Nations Radio Geneva.