The CAR is a country most people in Europe know very little of, if anything at all. This is no surprise, since it is almost never covered by the international press. It is not always clear why some countries receive less attention than others. In the case of the CAR, the lack of problems and misery cannot be the reason. In January 2009, more than 5% of its population was still in forced displacement and throughout 2008 half of its prefectures have suffered attacks from armed groups, resulting in one fourth of the population being affected by the violence. Looking wider than the security issue, we find the Central African Republic ranking 178th of the 179 countries included in the Human Development Index of the UNDP.
Although the country is scarcely populated, it is tormented by a multitude of armed actors. These belligerents use their weapons for a diversity of reasons but they have one thing in common: each of them would be a weak opponent for any well-organised state, but then this is exactly what the country lacks.
A PDF version of the report is available below. If you want to open the report in a separate window, right click on the hyperlink.
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The web maps
More information on the maps (sources, cartographic accuracy etc.) can be found in the report under the heading: 'Presentation of the map collection'.
How to use the web maps:
The link below will lead you to a webpage with 11 different maps that can be selected from the drop-down menu on the right side of the screen.
• You can change the level of detail on the maps by zooming in or out. The maps are available at three different scales: 1:7,500,000 (initial view), 1:3,000,000 and 1:1,000,000. To zoom in or out, move the scroll slide (in the bottom left corner) up or down, or just move the mouse wheel up or down. For the sake of clarity some map elements are hidden while viewing at a large scale but revealed when zooming in.Please note that sometimes more than one armed group is present - or more than one violent incident took place - in a specific place. In that case, the symbols representing the different groups or incidents overlap each other on the map, which makes it difficult or impossible to retrieve all information by clicking on the symbols. You can solve that problem by clicking on the ‘Lists’ function on the screen below. In the case of different groups, there will be a little drop- down menu on top of the table where each group has a different list of places. Choose the specific place in each of the lists. In the case of ‘Incidents’, the place name will be listed twice (or more), once for each separate incident.
• You can easily navigate through the map by dragging it with the mouse pointer. After a double click, the clicked-on position is displayed at the centre of the map.
• The maps feature an advanced geographical and thematical search function that locates strings of characters.
• When clicking the 'Overview' button a useful overview map appears in an extra window at the top left corner of the screen.
• A legend is provided for each map.
• You can also search for data thematically by clicking the 'Lists' button. The map will centre on the requested map element and automatically a table will appear with additional information on the map element.
• The same additional information on map elements can be retrieved by clicking on the item directly on the map itself (the mouse pointer should change in a hand first).
View the web maps