Central African Republic: MSF calls for a ceasefire in Bangassou to allow for the deployment of urgent medical aid

Following intense fighting that broke out this morning in Bangassou (Mbomou Province), Meacute;decins Sans Frontiegrave;res (MSF)/Doctors Without Borders is calling on all parties to agree to a ceasefire in order to access wounded people in urgent need of life-saving medical care.

In the space of a few hours, MSF treated 21 wounded people in Bangassou hospital. Our teams are aware of further wounded elsewhere in the city who are under fire and are therefore unable to reach medical care. At the moment, however, it is impossible to have an idea of the exact number as the intensity of the fighting means it is impossible to move around the city centre. We are asking all parties currently engaged in open fighting in Bangassou to agree to a ceasefire and allow us to collect the wounded and offer a minimum of humanitarian assistance to the population,rdquo; says Reneacute; Colgo, MSF’s deputy head of mission currently working in Bangassou’s hospital.

In recent days, some residents of Bangassou have fled the city but others are trapped in their homes or have sought refuge in places that they hope can offer some protection against the violence.

All wounded have the right to access medical care. Civilians should not be targeted, and all warring parties have a duty to respect the safety of medical facilities such as hospitals, ambulances and their staff,rdquo; says Reneacute; Colgo.

Conflict in the eastern part of the Central African Republic has intensified in recent months, reaching what was previously the relatively stable province of Mbomou in March. On Monday 8 May, MSF’s teams in Bangassou hospital treated 12 people who had been wounded in clashes between UN forces and an armed group, 25 kilometres from the city.

Source: Medecins sans frontiAres (MSF).