Portal:Central African Republic

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The Central African Republic Portal

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Flag of the Central African Republic
Coat of Arms of the Central African Republic
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The Central African Republic (CAR) (French: République centrafricaine, pronounced [ʀepyblik sɑ̃tʀafʀikɛn], or Centrafrique [sɑ̃tʀafʀik]; Sango Ködörösêse tî Bêafrîka), is a landlocked country in Central Africa. It borders Chad in the north, Sudan in the east, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Republic of the Congo in the south, and Cameroon in the west. The CAR covers a land area of almost 623,000 km², and has an estimated population of about 4.4 million as per 2008. Bangui is the capital city.

Most of the CAR consists of Sudano-Guinean savannas but it also includes a Sahelo-Sudanian zone in the north and an equatorial forest zone in the south. Two thirds of the country lies in the basins of the Ubangi River, which flows south into the Congo River, while the remaining third lies in the basin of the Chari River, which flows north into Lake Chad.

Since most of the territory locates in the Ubangi and Shari river basins, France called the colony it carved out in this region Ubangi-Chari, or Oubangui-Chari in French. It became a semi-autonomous territory of the French Community in 1958 and then an independent nation on 13 August 1960. For over three decades after independence, the CAR was ruled by presidents who were not chosen in multi-party democratic elections or took power by force. Local discontent with this system was eventually reinforced by international pressure, following the end of the Cold War.

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Birao burnt down.jpg

The Central African Republic Bush War began with the rebellion by the Union of Democratic Forces for Unity (UFDR) rebels, led by Michel Detodia, after the current President of the Central African Republic, François Bozizé, seized power in 2003. However, the real fighting began in 2004. The Civil War may be connected to the Darfur conflict in neighbouring Sudan. The CAR government says the rebels are operating from Darfur with the support of the Sudanese authorities. So far, around 10,000 people have been displaced because of the civil unrest.

The UFDR consists of three allies, the Groupe d'action patriotique pour la liberation de Centrafrique (GAPLC), the Mouvement des libérateurs Centrafricains pour la justice (MLCJ), and the Front démocratique Centrafricain (FDC). The group signed a peace agreement with the government in April 2007.

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Peul women in Paoua.jpg
Credit: hdptcar

In Paoua, Central African Republic, Peul women communities receive help from the Danish Refugee Council to set up small businesses.

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Wikinews Central African Republic portal
  • March 7: Polio vaccination campaign targets 85 million African children
  • January 19: Seven dead, one missing, two survive French helicopter crash off Gabon coast
  • November 9: "Darfur a powder keg" says UN Head of Humanitarian Affairs

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edit Barthélemy Boganda (4 April 1910 – 29 March 1959) was the leading nationalist politician of what is now the Central African Republic. Boganda was active prior to his country's independence, during the period when the area, part of French Equatorial Africa, was administered by France under the name of Oubangui-Chari. He served as the first Prime Minister of the Central African Republic autonomous territory.

Boganda was born into a family of subsistence farmers, and was adopted and educated by Roman Catholic Church missionaries. In 1938, he was ordained as the first Roman Catholic priest from Oubangui-Chari. During World War II, Boganda served in a number of missions and after was persuaded by the Bishop of Bangui to enter politics. In 1946, he became the first Oubanguian elected to the French National Assembly, where he maintained a political platform against racism and the colonial regime. He then returned to Oubangui-Chari to form a grassroots movement in opposition of French colonialism. The movement led to the foundation of the Movement for the Social Evolution of Black Africa (MESAN), and became popular among villagers and the working class. Boganda's reputation was damaged when he was laicized from the priesthood after marrying a parliamentary secretary. (Read more...)

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