Through the Lens: Central African Republic

Market, Gbiti Camp Hamadou, 20 years old. I arrived in the camp 3 months ago. I walked for two weeks from Yaloké. I passed by Baoro, then Carnot, Gaza and finally made it to Gbiti. My family is in Chad. They were staying in Bozum when the conflict started and were sent to Chad in a convoy organized by the Chadian authorities. I left with absolutely nothing. I didn't even have shoes - someone gave these sandals to me on the way. In Carnot and Gaza we were caught in an ambush. Four people were killed, including my 40 year-old brother. His wife and kids are also in Gbiti now. I am registered - UNHCR will decide my future. I'm willing to go back to CAR as soon as the country is stable. We've heard rumors that the UNHCR wants to resettle us definitely in Gbiti but I don't feel safe here: it's too close to the border.
Daniel Barney
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Photojournalist Spencer Platt spent two weeks in December 2007 in Central African Republic, documenting the humanitarian situation and MSF’s work.

Spencer Platt, a staff photographer with Getty Images, spent two weeks in December 2007 with MSF in the Central African Republic. Here, he describes photographing a population living in extreme distress.

MSF has worked in Central African Republic since 1997.

In 2007, MSF helped provide primary and secondary health care in Kabo, Batangafo, Paoua, Kaga Bandoro, Markounda, and Boguila in the northwest.  Tens of thousands of people were treated for malaria and other infectious diseases. Violence in the northeast has forced thousands to flee into the forests; MSF provides assistance to these populations through fixed clinics in Gordil and Birao.

Close to 30,000 people have fled violence in the northwest into Cameroon and have suffered from a lack of shelter, food, and medical assistance.

More than 45,000 CAR refugees have gathered in southern Chad, where MSF works in a district hospital and provides assistance to refugees in camps and local residents.