(Xinhua) — Some 90,000 people have fled their homes since fighting between rebels in the Central African Republic (CAR) began earlier this month, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) reported Tuesday.
According to the Geneva-based agency, 68,000 men, women and children have been displaced within CAR while 20,000 have sought relative safety in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
This massive displacement, which is forcing many to sleep in the open or in improvised shelters, is the result of significant rebel activity in several of CAR’s localities and prefectures, the agency added.
UNHCR said that in Bria prefecture alone, 41,000 people have been forced to flee their homes. Hundreds of civilians have also been reportedly killed there.
The situation for civilians is also compounded by the fact that humanitarian access is extremely limited in light of the dire security situation.
According to UNHCR, over half a million people are internally displaced in CAR. A further 102,000 Central African refugees were documented in neighboring DRC before the latest influx took place.