Since gaining independence from France in 1960, the Central African Republic (CAR) has struggled to provide safety and security for its people. In 2013, predominantly Muslim rebel groups banded together to oppose the government of the Central African Republic, committing atrocities against civilians as they marched on the capital. Largely Christian self-defense forces began targeting Muslim civilians in response. A 2014 UN report concluded that abuses by these forces amounted to ethnic cleansing of the country’s Muslim community. There has been near impunity for these abuses, despite the welcomed establishment of an internationally-supported, domestic war crimes court in 2015. Read conflict background, a bearing witness account of the violence, and a study on the US government's response to the crisis.
Tensions that had mounted over a decade erupted in atrocities against civilians following the collapse of the Bozizé government.
A 2016 report by Leonard and Sophie Davis Genocide Prevention Fellow Charlie Brown explores how the Obama administration responded to the crisis in the Central African Republic.
Our quantitative assessment, from the Early Warning Project, estimates the risk of a new mass killing in the Central African Republic.
See photos taken by Michael Christopher Brown in the Central African Republic in March 2014.