Battered by armed conflicts, the Central African Republic carries the scars of repeated trauma, atrocities, and crises that have displaced hundreds of thousands and caused hunger, despite having highly fertile land. In 2011, Doctors Without Borders described the country as in a state of “chronic medical emergency.” Despite its agricultural, mineral, and other natural resources, decades of upheavals, riots, and isolation have greatly hindered education, health care, and economic development. In March 2013, a coup d’état plunged the country into chaos, particularly in the north and east. This political power struggle exploited existing ethnic and religious tensions. Beginning in December 2013, armed conflict in the capital and in the west led to massive population displacements. In this context, many central Africans called for a return ...

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