Bishop Aguirre CARComboni Bishop Juan José Aguirre of Bangassou wrote on January 7: "Today the situation is stagnant... The violence that we have experienced for almost a year both in the capital city and in the North is beyond description... Currently, the country is not functioning and it will be years before we can recover from this mess."

The overwhelmingly Muslim Seleka rebels and mercenaries who invaded the country last March have now given rise to rival groups of mostly non-Muslim young people - not necessarily Christians as the media like to repeat - who are taking their revenge on local Muslims and remaining Seleka. Not even the French army has been able to bring violence to an end.

Recently, the entire government body ran abroad for protection and now the totally inefficient president has been substituted with another figure head.

The number of displaced people, especially women and children, is increasing daily and, as usual only the Church and a few NGOs are there to try to help them with their meager resources.