Nowhere to go

Challenges faced by sexual violence survivors in accessing services in Bangui, Central African Republic

November 2019

Sexual violence (SV) has garnered a lot of attention at international fora in recent months, with millions of dollars in donor funding pledged towards ending this “epidemic”, particularly in areas of armed conflict. However, survivors of sexual violence in Central African Republic (CAR) aren’t feeling the impact of this international momentum due to services often being absent or dysfunctional.In 2018, there were 1,969 cases of sexual violence reported to the Gender Based Violence Information Management System (GBV-IMS) in CAR, and a further 4,256 were identified in MSF (Médecins sans frontières/ Doctors Without Borders) projects. However, the actual figure is likely to be much higher given the limited access to services and well-documented underreporting of cases.

The population of Bangui has been repeatedly exposed to high levels of violence, displacement, and other human rights abuses. Although Bangui is not currently under active conflict, as it was in 2013 and 2016, tensions remain high in the capital’s communities, resulting in peaks of violence, including sexual violence.