By Emmanuel Gutierrez |Staff Writer|
Genocide may ensue in the nation due to lack of awareness and complicated, bloodstained histories, according to journalist Joshua Keating of Slate, an online daily magazine.
At least a quarter of the nation’s population has been forcefully relocated from their homes and more than two-thirds of their schools have been shut down.
The remaining third, under the protection of the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), have been subjected to “looting, arson, and shootings,” according to Keating.
“[People] don’t know if it is a country or just a region of Africa. This might be why we are not getting a lot of visibility,” said Souleymane Diabaté, national representative of UNICEF.
Extensive humanitarian emergencies such as the Typhoon Haiyan striking the Philippines and the instability in Syria have stretched the allocation of efforts and resources thin.
Although religious parties shift in power in the region as the years pass, the minorities are always targeted through violent and deadly means.
Dictator Francois Bozizé was overthrown in 2013 by a Muslim rebel group known as the Séléka, which accused him of “violating the terms of the peace agreement,” according to Slate.
Slate states that the Séléka utilized their power to “campaign” the “looting, torture and killing” of Christians in the region.
In January of this year, the “anti-Balaka” militia groups, comprised predominately of Christians, overthrew the Séléka government and the Muslim populations became the target of the “reprisal killings” once again, according to Slate.
The African Union and France have deployed 5,000 and 2,000 peacekeeping troops respectively in the vicinity.
The UN Security Council approved additional police forces and peacekeeping missions, but they aren’t expected to arrive until the end of the year.
Despite the external aid, the conflicts and violence continues and in some circumstances humanitarian interferences have caused more violence.
Detailed in a UN report, French peacekeepers disarmed Muslim militia groups, with the unexpected consequence of enabling armed Christians to kill them.
The UN estimates that over 6,000 child soldiers have been recruited by both factions.
As these tragedies continue, media exposure grows.
The murder of a French journalist in Central African Republic has been denounced by the United Nations.
“I condemn the killing of Camille Lepage, whose only desire was to show […] the fate of marginalized populations,” said Irina Bokova, Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
Bokova stressed the responsible parties will be held accountable.
“In accordance with international humanitarian law, journalists, media professionals and associated personnel engaged in dangerous professional missions are considered civilians and shall be respected and protected as such,” stated the UN Security Council.
“Central African Republic is a forgotten crisis,” said Diabaté. “We hear more about Syria, Mali, and now Ukraine.”