United Nations, Jan 28 (IANS) UN humanitarians report that recent clashes between Congolese forces and M23 rebels have displaced about 90,000 people, a UN spokesman said.
The chief spokesman for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Stephane Dujarric, said on Friday that initial reports from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) centered the fighting in and around Kitchanga in North Kivu province in eastern Congo.
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“Many of the displaced are seeking refuge in nearby Mweso, in schools and churches and with host families,” Dujarric added.
“As more displaced people arrive in Mweso, humanitarian organisations are concerned about the spread of cholera, following an outbreak last month.”
He said the clashes also impeded road access, making it difficult to deliver humanitarian aid, Xinhua news agency reported.
The spokesman added the UN peacekeeping mission, known as MONUSCO, provides physical security and immediate assistance, including shelter, water and medical care, to about 500 displaced civilians in and around the UN base in Kitchanga.
Dujarric said the UN reiterates the Secretary-General’s call on all armed groups to lay down their weapons and join the national Disarmament, Demobilisation, Community Recovery and Stabilisation program.