The crisis in the Central African Republic
by Humanitarian Practice Network September 2014

This edition of Humanitarian Exchange focuses on the crisis in the Central African Republic (CAR), where spiralling violence has left thousands dead and more than a million displaced.

  • In her lead article, Enrica Picco highlights the slow and inadequate response to the crisis, and questions whether the humanitarian system has the will and capacity to respond in such contexts.
  • Alison Giffen and Marla Keenan argue that protecting civilians should be the top priority of MINUSCA, the new peacekeeping mission.
  • Emma Fanning emphasises the need for the mission to safeguard the distinction between humanitarian and political and military decision-making.
  • Josep Zapater explores strategies to protect Muslims besieged in Bangui.
  • Anthony Neal reports on efforts to promote reconciliation and enhance social cohesion.
  • David Loquercio reflects on his temporary deployment to CAR as an interagency coordinator responsible for promoting accountability.
  • Keith Chibafa reports on a pilot of a digital system to manage relief distributions.
  • Jacobo Quintanilla and Jonathan Pedneault discuss the role of the local media in enhancing dialogue and reconciliation.
  • Sean Maguire outlines the International Committee of the Red Cross’ support for health services
  • Diana Trimiño Mora and her co-authors describe the International Rescue Committee’s efforts to address violence against women and girls.
  • Lola Wilhelm presents the key findings from the Assessment Capacities Project’s recent analysis of humanitarian needs assessments.

Articles in the Practice and Policy Notes examine:

  • UNMISS’ experience of protection of civilians sites in South Sudan
  • The use of social protection systems to implement emergency cash transfers in Lesotho
  • Lessons on engagement with armed groups in Afghanistan and Somalia.

As always, we welcome any comments or feedback, which can be sent to or to The Coordinator, 203 Blackfriars Road, London SE1 8NJ