[JURIST] Amnesty International (AI) [advocacy website] on Thursday released a report [document, PDF] identifying various government, militia and rebel leaders of the Central African Republican (CAR) that the organization believes to be responsible for serious violent offenses that have forced nearly a million people to abandon their homes over the past year. The report, entitled "Central African Republic: Time for Accountability," urges interim president Catherine Samba Panza to bring the accused offenders to justice with the support of the African Union and the international community. Many have been criticized for not doing enough up to this point to bring the criminals to justice, and the report notes that on top of the lack of investigation is the fact that many suspects escape from prison due to lack of security. Specifically, the report states:
The CAR Transitional Authorities must show strong political will to ensure that there is an end to impunity for crimes under international law and other serious human rights violations and abuses that have taken place in the country especially since the start of the ongoing crisis in December 2013. Despite the precarious situation of most of the State institutionsincluding the judiciarythe Transitional Authorities, with the support of the international community, must take immediate steps to address these systematic and widespread crimes.According to AI, the violence will only end when there is justice for the victims.
The crisis in the CAR [Reuters backgrounder, JURIST news archive] started after the mainly Muslim Seleka rebels ousted the government of Bozize in March 2013. In June of this year the International Federation for Human Rights stated [JURIST report] that religious violence in the CAR has the potential to create genocide, and urged other nations to intervene to stop the conflict. Earlier in June Panza requested that the International Criminal Court (ICC) investigate crimes committed within the country [JURIST report] since August 21 2012. The ICC had opened a preliminary investigation [JURIST report] into the crimes occurring in the CAR in February. In March the UN established an International Commission of Inquiry [JURIST report] into the human rights violations occurring in the CAR, one month before the UN Security Council voted to create a peacekeeping force [JURIST report] within the country.