More than 6,000 forcibly displaced Congolese receive food aid

Making a Difference, 26 November 2012

© UNHCR/F.Noy
A volcano looms over Mugunga III camp. Some of the distribution took place here.

GOMA, Democratic Republic of the Congo, November 26 (UNHCR) The UN refugee agency helped the World Food Programme (WFP) distribute food rations to thousands of forcibly displaced people in eastern Congo's North Kivu province at the weekend.

Kouassi Lazare Etien, head of UNHCR's office in the North Kivu capital of Goma, on Monday praised WFP for responding positively to a UNHCR request to provide three-day food packages to internally displaced people (IDP) in Mugunga I, Mugunga III and Lac Vert camps as well as other sites.

The recipients had not received assistance for several days due to the fighting in North Kivu between government forces and the rebel M23 movement, who captured Goma on Tuesday last week and the area around Mugunga III.

Etien said staff from UNHCR and non-governmental organizations had facilitated the WFP distribution of emergency food rations on Saturday and Sunday to 2,055 families, or 6,165 people. The distribution of 10.2 tonnes of aid included cornflour, peas, vegetable oil and salt. The aid also included soap and jerry cans.

He said many of those receiving aid wished to return to their home areas in North Kivu's Rutshuru territory. The UN estimates that about 140,000 people have been displaced by the recent fighting in North Kivu and some 10,000 in South Kivu.

The situation in Goma, meanwhile, remains calm but tense. Supplies of water and electricity have not been fully restored. Humanitarian agencies continue to prepare for the resumption of emergency relief operations.

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UNHCR/Partners Bring Aid to North Kivu

As a massive food distribution gets underway in six UNHCR-run camps for tens of thousands of internally displaced Congolese in North Kivu, the UN refugee agency continues to hand out desperately needed shelter and household items.

A four-truck UNHCR convoy carrying 33 tonnes of various aid items, including plastic sheeting, blankets, kitchen sets and jerry cans crossed Wednesday from Rwanda into Goma, the capital of the conflict-hit province in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The aid, from regional emergency stockpiles in Tanzania, was scheduled for immediate distribution. The supplies arrived in Goma as the World Food Programme (WFP), with assistance from UNHCR, began distributing food to some 135,000 displaced people in the six camps run by the refugee agency near Goma.

More than 250,000 people have been displaced since the fighting resumed in August in North Kivu. Estimates are that there are now more than 1.3 million displaced people in this province alone.

Posted on 6 November 2008

UNHCR/Partners Bring Aid to North Kivu

UNHCR/Partners Bring Aid to North Kivu

Since 2006, renewed conflict and general insecurity in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo's North Kivu province has forced some 400,000 people to flee their homes – the country's worst displacement crisis since the formal end of the civil war in 2003. In total, there are now some 800,000 people displaced in the province, including those uprooted by previous conflicts.

Hope for the future was raised in January 2008 when the DRC government and rival armed factions signed a peace accord. But the situation remains tense in North Kivu and tens of thousands of people still need help. UNHCR has opened sites for internally displaced people (IDPs) and distributed assistance such as blankets, plastic sheets, soap, jerry cans, firewood and other items to the four camps in the region. Relief items have also been delivered to some of the makeshift sites that have sprung up.

UNHCR staff have been engaged in protection monitoring to identify human rights abuses and other problems faced by IDPs and other populations at risk across North Kivu.

UNHCR's ninemillion campaign aims to provide a healthy and safe learning environment for nine million refugee children by 2010.

Posted on 28 May 2008

UNHCR/Partners Bring Aid to North Kivu

Displaced in North Kivu: A Life on the Run

Fighting rages on in various parts of the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), with seemingly no end in sight for hundreds of thousands of Congolese forced to flee violence and instability over the past two years. The ebb and flow of conflict has left many people constantly on the move, while many families have been separated. At least 1 million people are displaced in North Kivu, the hardest hit province. After years of conflict, more than 1,000 people still die every day - mostly of hunger and treatable diseases. In some areas, two out of three women have been raped. Abductions persist and children are forcefully recruited to fight. Outbreaks of cholera and other diseases have increased as the situation deteriorates and humanitarian agencies struggle to respond to the needs of the displaced.

When the displacement crisis worsened in North Kivu in 2007, the UN refugee agency sent emergency teams to the area and set up operations in several camps for internally displaced people (IDPs). Assistance efforts have also included registering displaced people and distributing non-food aid. UNHCR carries out protection monitoring to identify human rights abuses and other problems faced by IDPs in North and South Kivu.

Displaced in North Kivu: A Life on the Run

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