News24

UN urges more effort to help DRC

2010-08-20 14:33

Goma - The deputy head of the UN Observer Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (Monusco), Fidele Sarassoro, has called on the international community for a "big financial effort" to help the country.

Sarassoro was speaking on Thursday on world humanitarian aid day in Goma, the main town of Nord-Kivu province in the east, where several armed groups are active, notably the Hutu rebels of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR), an AFP correspondent reported.

"We need a big financial effort to be able to save lives and assuage the distress of millions of Congolese," Sarassoro said.

"The humanitarian needs remain considerable and whenever they ease off, a new crisis occurs and reminds us that the task remains huge," he added.

In 2010, to meet needs estimated by the UN system at $827m only about $400m have so far been supplied by donors.

On July 31, the UN estimated that there were more than 1.9 million displaced people and about a million who have returned to their homes, which makes nearly three million vulnerable people concentrated in the unstable provinces of Nord-Kivu and Sud-Kivu and Orientale in the far northeast.

Sarassoro also said that "humanitarian workers were subjected to 105 attacks in 2008, 176 in 2009 and already 131 en 2010".