"Fear and trauma" high in Central African Republic

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Abdelkarim Arame (70) found shelter at Ecole Liberty but she still worries about the situation in Bossangoa. UNHCR/S.Phelps

Communities in the Central African Republic are suffering high levels of fear and trauma, according to the UN Refugee Agency, (UNHCR).

An ongoing internal conflict has pitted Muslims against Christians and has led to the displacement of one million people.

Over 700,000 are internally displaced in CAR and a further 300,000 have fled into Chad, Cameroon and Ethiopia as refugees.

UNHCR's Volker Turk said that the CAR government can do little to ease the tension between communities.

"The amount of fear and trauma that is within the communities is extremely high. Fear of course is being used. I think there is a very strong fear factor especially with the traumatized population that exist. The government is absolutely overwhelmed and has no capacity. I think we should not have any illusion that we are confronted here with any functioning state structure."  (23″)

Renewed fighting across the country has marked the anniversary of the 24 March seizure of power by rebels.

The Red Cross reported that at least 18 people were killed between 22 and 23 March.

Daniel Dickinson, United Nations

Duration:  1’19″



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