The OIC Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission (IPHRC) expressed its profound concerns about the tragic ongoing deterioration in the human rights situation in the Central African Republic (CAR), and strongly condemned the recent escalation of violence against civilians including the attacks carried out by the Anti-Balaka militia in a mosque in Kembe, on Friday 13 October 2017, killing 26 and at Pombolo where over hundred were massacred on 18 October 2017.
The Commission, in particular, expressed its grave concern over the rising number of violent attacks by the "Anti-Balaka" militia against innocent citizens throughout the country. It strongly condemns the numerous acts of gross human rights violations which involves summary executions and mass killings against unarmed civilians, including women and children; torture, ill-treatment, enforced disappearance, sexual violence, widespread looting of private and public property, as well as desecration of places of worship.
With the restoration of democracy, after successful elections last year, the international community was hopeful that the situation in CAR would finally stabilize with peace and security returning to the country. However, since November 2016, with the resurgence of violence across CAR, hundreds have been killed and wounded while tens of thousands have been forced from their homes amid escalating hostility resulting from clashes between armed groups who continue to control a large chunk of CAR’s territory. Various UN officials have warned on “early signs of genocide”, including the risk of an all-out civil war, as State authority remains absent over most parts of the country. These serious developments are deepening the already severe humanitarian crisis and may expand the frontiers of insecurity in a region already grappling with extremist groups.
IPHRC, therefore, calls upon the authorities in CAR and all the relevant regional and international stakeholders, in particular the UN Security Council, to take immediate steps to bring an end to the ongoing violence and bloodshed including the tragic human rights violations against the civilian population. No efforts should be spared to bring to justice those responsible for these heinous crimes. IPHRC also appealed to the regional and international humanitarian agencies to extend urgent assistance to the victims and the needy people in all affected areas of CAR.