The overthrowing of President elect, Ange-Felix Patassé by former General Francois Bozizé on 15 March 2003 marked the culmination of six months of fighting between rebels and troops loyal to the government of the Central African Republic (CAR). An estimated 200-300,000 were displaced by the fighting which was accompanied by massive violations of human rights, including rapes, summary executions and looting.
27 October 2003 | Country Profile
Since its independence from France in 1960, the Central African Republic (CAR) has been an unstable country. Despite the economic potential of its natural resources (diamonds, gold, uranium and timber) and favourable environmental conditions for farming, CAR remains one of the poorest countries in the world. More than half of its 3.7 million inhabitants live in rural areas. Consequently, the ongoing conflict has hit people particularly hard in rural areas, as well as in Bangui and its suburb. The political, economical and social situation has worsened since the mid-1990s. Since 1996, people have regularly been forced to flee because of the violence associated with repeated mutinies, attempted military coups and prolonged fighting between government forces and rebels, including arbitrary killings and sexual violence.
14 May 2003 | Country Profile