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DRC humanitarian crisis 'world's most neglected', says UN

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  • DRC humanitarian crisis 'world's most neglected', says UN

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    DRC humanitarian crisis 'world's most neglected', says UN

    Published on Thu, 25/05/2023 - 05:16 | Edited on Thu, 05/25/2023 - 05:19

    The Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary General of the United Nations in the DRC and Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Bruno Lemarquis affirmed Tuesday May 23 in Geneva that the crisis in the DRC is the humanitarian crisis "the most neglected in the world ".

    As more than 6.3 million people are displaced inside the Democratic Republic of Congo, the humanitarian needs in this country are increasing exponentially, warned this senior UN official, noting that it is a question of a “ very acute and very complex ” humanitarian crisis.

    “ According to the Norwegian Refugee Council, this is the most neglected humanitarian crisis in the world ,” he added. In this regard, he recalls that the current situation is mainly due to conflicts, but also to epidemics and disasters. " It is aggravated by many factors, including the lack of state presence in some areas and the lack of infrastructure ."

    More than 6.3 million internally displaced

    These are all factors that lead to significant population movements. For example, since the beginning of 2023, more than 200,000 people have been newly displaced in Ituri province, bringing the total to more than 1.6 million displaced people.

    Women make up nearly half of the displaced population in the province.

    According to a situation report by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), more than 80% of the displacements are due to attacks and armed clashes.

    At the same time, over the past 18 months, nearly 829,000 people have returned to their homes, 36% of them to Irumu territory.

    A total of 6.3 million people are internally displaced, “ the highest number in Africa ”.

    “ Since March 2022, the situation has really worsened, especially with the resurgence of the so-called M23 movement. Humanitarian needs, which were already very high, have increased further. They have skyrocketed with additional population displacements. In particular, the resurgence of the M23 has had direct consequences with more than a million additional displaced people, mainly in North Kivu and especially around the city of Goma”, argued Mr. Lemarquis .

    A call for funds financed up to 20%

    On another level, a latest OCHA report took stock of the floods caused by heavy rains in the territory of Kalehe in South Kivu. Two weeks after the heavy rains that caused flooding and mudslides in villages in Kalehe territory (Bushushu and Nyamukubi health areas), the active search for bodies under the rubble continues.

    As of May 17, at least 428 people have been killed (402 found dead under the rubble and 26 others have succumbed to their injuries in health facilities). The disaster affected thousands of people, many of whom remain missing.

    According to OCHA, about 3,000 houses were affected, including about 1,200 completely destroyed. In the aftermath of the disaster, survivors found refuge in hospitals, schools, churches and other public spaces. Some were taken in by host families while others would have settled in spontaneous sites.

    A new deal that risks aggravating an already worrying humanitarian situation. “ This year, there are particularly virulent measles outbreaks with high numbers. And also disasters - two weeks ago there were deadly floods which led to landslides. It is one of the most catastrophic events, one of the most significant natural disasters that the DRC has ever known. So far, more than 400 people have been killed in South Kivu, but 6,000 people are still missing ,” Lemarquis concluded.

    In terms of funding, this year's needs amount to 2.25 billion dollars, but so far only 20% of this amount has been collected.

    With UN Info.

    Le représentant spécial adjoint du Secrétaire général de l’ONU en RDC et coordinateur résident et coordinateur humanitaire en République démocratique du Congo, Bruno Lemarquis a affirmé mardi 23 mai à Genève que la crise en RDC est la crise humanitaire « la plus négligée au monde ». Alors que plus de 6,3 millions de personnes sont déplacées à l’intérieur République démocratique du Congo, les besoins humanitaires dans ce pays augmentent de façon exponentielle, a averti ce haut responsable de l’ONU, relevant qu’il s’agit d’une crise humanitaire « très aiguë et très complexe ».
    "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
    -Nelson Mandela

  • #2

    Week 22: 22-28 May 2023
    Data as reported by: 17:00; 28 May 2023

    Democratic Republic of the Congo

    Complex humanitarian Situation


    The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is
    experiencing recurrent armed conflicts with huge
    humanitarian consequences that have lasted for
    decades. The situation has further deteriorated due to
    the scale and multiplication of armed conflicts for the
    last two decades. In addition to manmade crises due
    to armed conflicts, DRC is also experiencing natural
    disasters and remains at risk for many natural hazards,
    including volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, floods, and

    From January to May 2023, nearly 677 000 people have
    been displaced bringing the total to more than 6.29
    million displaced people in the country. The main causes
    of displacement are armed attacks and clashes, followed
    by inter-community conflicts and natural disasters with
    respectively 87% (5.3 million), 9.4% (594 000) and 3%
    (187 000) of displaced people.

    Although humanitarian events have been reported
    almost everywhere on the national territory over the past
    three decades, the eastern side of the country (Ituri,
    North Kivu, South Kivu, and Tanganyika provinces) is
    severely affected due to a relatively high frequency of
    the reported humanitarian situations in that part of the

    In Ituri province, approximately 3 535 internally displaced
    persons (IDPs) were registered around Biakato in
    Mandima health zone, Mambassa territory between 28
    April and 2 May 2023 following two incursions by alleged
    elements of the Allied Democratic Forces which resulted
    in several people killed.

    About 14 088 IDPs from around ten villages in Rwampara
    and Bambu health zones have been received since 28
    April 2023 in Kunda health area and in Mwanga health
    area in Rwampara health zone, Irumu territory. According
    to the local authorities, this population fled clashes
    opposing two rival community military groups. About 30
    people were killed and more than thousands of houses
    burned following the violent clashes.

    On 3 May 2023, unidentified armed people killed 16
    civilians during an armed attack in the Aforwoth locality of
    the Yilo health area; the Yilo health center was looted and
    burned in December 2022 by unidentified armed people.
    For North Kivu province, on 18 April 2023, at least nine
    civilians were killed in the villages of Katerrain, Tapis
    Rouge and Mambume Mbume in Oicha health zone, Beni
    territory and about 15 others are missing. This armed
    attack came less than two weeks after another attack
    that killed 26 civilians in the Musandaba village. Since
    the beginning of this year the ongoing violence in Oicha
    health zone has already recorded more than 50 civilian
    deaths. In Lubero and Musienene health zones, Lubero
    territory, at least five civilians have been killed and more
    than 24 000 displaced following fighting between armed
    groups that occurred since mid-April 2023. It is reported
    that nearly 90 000 displaced people who have returned to
    Rwanguba and Rutshuru health zones in Rutshuru territory
    since October 2022, are in urgent need of humanitarian

    In South Kivu province, heavy rains that occurred between
    2 and 5 May 2023 caused the overflow of Chishova,
    Kabushungu, Lukungula, Lwano and Nyamukubi rivers
    with floods and landslides leading to extensive damages
    with fatalities, injuries, and infrastructural losses.
    According to the latest estimates regarding human toll
    as of 26 May 2023, at least 443 people were killed, 206
    injured, 2 536 people missing, 6 221 people affected
    and 34 556 people in need of humanitarian assistance in
    relation to this event.

    The affected area is also hosting 107 700 displaced
    people, mainly from North Kivu fleeing armed conflict. The
    immediate needs include supplies to ensure dignified and
    safe burials, medical care for the affected and injured,
    food aid for all affected, and shelter for people who have
    lost their homes as well as safe drinking water.


    At least 227 humanitarian partners including (157, 69%) national NGOs, are operational in the country
    implementing about 421 humanitarian projects. These projects target at least 1.5 million people affected by the
    ongoing humanitarian crisis.

    For the Kalehe disaster response in Sud-Kivu province, WHO and partners continue to support the government
    efforts on the management of the disaster’s consequences through direct live saving assistance to the affected
    population and local capacity strengthening of the vital damaged infrastructures including health facilities.


    One of major challenges for response to the complex humanitarian crisis in DRC is the reduction of humanitarian
    access. This reduction affects not only the affected populations but mostly humanitarian actors who are supposed
    to bring relief to the affected population. Humanitarian partners operating in the country have reported at least 217
    incidents affecting humanitarian access between January and March. National and international NGOs are the most
    affected due to their large operational capacity involving numerous movements in the field. This year there was at least
    one humanitarian actor that suspended its operations due to insecurity. This reduction of humanitarian access makes
    the ongoing humanitarian crises more complex increasing the number of avoidable fatalities among the affected
    populations due to lack of access to the humanitarian services.

    "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
    -Nelson Mandela


    • #3
      Massive needs everywhere as displacement reaches unprecedented levels in DRC

      Project Update 20 December 2023

      In eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) the humanitarian crisis has reached dramatic heights in 2023, with massive levels of violence and displacement.

      In North Kivu, armed clashes linked to the resurgence of the M23 armed group have forced up to one million people to flee their homes.

      Often overshadowed, the provinces of Ituri and South Kivu are similarly wracked by relentless violence, causing grave repercussions for many people. While the humanitarian situation is catastrophic, aid remains desperately limited, and people’s needs continue to be overwhelmingly unmet.

      In a grim milestone, the UN announced in late October that the DRC has nearly seven million people who have been displaced, with around five million concentrated in the eastern part of the country – a record.

      In North Kivu, violence between armed groups – the M23 prominent among them – has triggered constant and massive people movements across Rutshuru, Nyiragongo, and Masisi territories. The escalation of the conflict since October this year has only further increased the humanitarian disaster.

      "The current situation in the province is just catastrophic" says Germain Lubango Kabemba, MSF country representative in Goma. "Wherever you look now, the urgency to act is there.”

      The crisis gripping the DRC demands an urgent and united international response. Despite our repeated calls for the mobilisation of aid, progress remains direly insufficient.
      "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
      -Nelson Mandela