DR Congo: Armed group attacks displace nearly 1 million since January
Escalating violence in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has displaced nearly one million people since January, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said on Thursday.
An estimated 6.1 million are internally displaced, a 17 per cent increase from October, according to its Displacement Tracking Matrix.
Deadly attack, intolerable dangers
At least 46 people were killed in the latest incident which occurred at a camp for displaced persons in eastern Ituri province on Sunday.
IOM strongly condemned the attack, which was reportedly carried out by Coopérative pour le développement du Congo (CODECO), a coalition of militia groups.
“This recent gruesome attack is a testament to the intolerable dangers displaced people in DRC face daily,” said Federico Soda, Director for the Department of Emergencies.
“IOM strongly condemns this heinous violation of international humanitarian law and recalls that attacks against civilians may constitute war crimes. Concerted efforts are desperately needed to end the violence and help the Congolese people find peace.”
Humanitarian situation worsens
As conflict intensifies, the humanitarian situation continues to deteriorate, with millions facing acute food insecurity as well as other critical needs. Overall, more than 26 million people across the DRC need humanitarian aid.
Despite insecurity, and limited access to parts of the country, IOM and partners have been striving to provide emergency relief to displaced people and those affected by the violence.
The UN agency said it is scaling-up operations which will enable a more effective crisis response to the humanitarian emergency caused by the surge in violence.