QATAR RED CRESCENT ORGANISES FORUM ON CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC (CAR) REFUGEE CRISIS

DOHA, Qatar, Mar 9 – Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS), has co-organised a two-day reflective discussion forum in N’Djamena, Chad, themed, “The Central African Republic: Three Years After the Events of 2013-2015: Status Quo and Perspectives in light of International Humanitarian Law.”

The forum was held with the initiative of Dr Haggar Mohamed Ahmed, Chairman of the Cultural Centre for Arab and African Research, in cooperation with QRCS, according to QRCS press release.

In his opening remarks, Dr Fawzi Oussedik, Head of QRCS International Relations, commended the initiative at a critical time, when the Central African Republic (CAR) is witnessing a democratic shift.

According to Dr Oussedik, International Humanitarian Law stipulates protection and shelter for refugees, under a protocol agreement between humanitarian organisations and governments.

“Islamic Syariah pays special attention to the issue of refugees,” Dr Oussedik pointed out, calling upon international humanitarian organisations and Chadian government authorities, to continue to support CAR refugees.

Dr Ahmed urged the refugees to join hands, forget past hostilities, and work together towards comprehensive reconciliation and peace in CAR.

“Reconciliation between the belligerents is imperative for them to build a brighter future that encompasses everyone in the country,” he stated.

The main objective of the event is to discuss the tragic situation of hundreds of thousands of CAR refugees and IDP’s (internally displaced persons), due to the protracted political and security unrest sweeping the country.

The bloody massacres against the Muslim-majority Seleka resulted in an unprecedented state of insecurity and chaos, and pushed more than one million civilians to neighbouring countries.

Among the objectives of the forum were to have communication with CAR refugees in Chad, to better understand the situation in their country, after three years of displacement and homelessness; exchange of ideas about the perspectives of permanent peace, community dialogue, and potential repatriation; and creation of a platform or framework, to initiate talks and pursue sustainable reconciliation between the fighting parties.

Many government and international organisations involved in the CAR refugee crisis were engaged in the discussions, including the Chadian Ministry of Public Security and Immigration, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and African Integration, CAR Embassy in Chad, the Office of the United Nations High

Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the Red Cross of Chad, and Qatar Charity office in Chad.

During the event, scientific papers on eight topics were introduced. Discussions were balanced between the two parties to the conflict, with a special focus on women.

Valuable input was produced by field experts from international organisations and officials from CAR and Chad, host of the largest number of CAR refugees

Source; QNA