Grave human rights violations taking place in the Central African Republic

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A makeshift camp for internally displaced in Bengui. FAO@PHOTO

Widespread human rights violations including extrajudicial killings, sexual violence, mutilations and rape have been taking place in the Central African Republic, according to the UN Human Rights office.

A preliminary report by a UN human rights team which has been in the country documents the deliberate targeting of civilians including women and children by militia groups.

The report says at least 40 people have been killed in the capital Bangui since Friday last week, as well as a number of kidnappings, mutilations and looting.

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay warns that despite the ongoing reconciliation efforts in Bangui, the security situation in the country remains volatile and dangerous with the risk of further attacks and massive violations of human rights.

Rupert Colville is the spokesperson for the UN Human Rights office.

"The OHCHR team documented numerous extra-judicial killings perpetrated in Bangui on December 5 and 6, after the launch of a coordinated attack by anti-Balaka forces. During the clashes, anti-Balaka forces killed members of the ex-Séléka forces but also deliberately targeted Muslim civilians, including women and children. During the reprisals that followed, numerous extra-judicial killings were also carried out by ex-Séléka forces who detained and reportedly executed civilian males, including boys, in Camp Kassai. They also searched for and executed men and boys at hospitals, including severely injured patients. The mission received multiple reports that the disarmament of ex-Séléka carried out by the French forces left some Muslim communities vulnerable to anti-Balaka retaliatory attacks and there were several incidents in Bangui during which anti-Balaka or hostile mobs targeted and killed recently disarmed ex-Séléka elements and their families."

The UN Human Rights Council will in the meantime hold a special session next Monday to discuss the situation of human rights in the Central African Republic.

Patrick Maigua, United Nations, Geneva.

Duration 2:03″

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