News / Africa

    MSF Scales Up Congolese Refugee Aid in Uganda

    Refugee children displaced by continued fighting in Democratic Republic of Congo's North Kivu province await food, Nyakabande refugee transit camp, Kisoro town, Uganda, July 13, 2012.
    Refugee children displaced by continued fighting in Democratic Republic of Congo's North Kivu province await food, Nyakabande refugee transit camp, Kisoro town, Uganda, July 13, 2012.
    Humanitarian aid group Doctors Without Borders (MSF - Médecins Sans Frontières) is scaling up operations in Uganda, where a new influx of refugees has arrived after renewed fighting between rebel group M23 and Democratic Republic of Congo forces.
     
    According to MSF, 22,000 people have fled their homes in Congo's North Kivu province since July 11, when hostilities between the military and M23 rebels reignited.
     
    The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) puts the number higher, at about 50,000.
     
    MSF’s head of mission in Uganda, Ruben Pottier, says refugees entering the country for both safety and humanitarian aid have increased in the past week, following a lull.
     
    Ugandan government authorities, he adds, are advising the refugees to move away from the border for their safety.
     
    "Since the last weeks we have seen the increase of refugees and we speak of peak of 400 to 500 refugees per day," he said. "Of course that is not every day, but there are peaks of those numbers."
     
    Last week's flare up in violence marked the first major conflict since Congolese forces bombed M23 headquarters in July.
     
    Both sides blame each other for unrest around Goma, a city of about one-million people on the Congo-Rwandan border.
     
    MSF says the new refugee arrivals are living in Uganda's Bukukwanga transit camp, a facility designed to hold about 12,000 people, but which UNHCR officials say is hosting more than 20,000.
     
    The refugee agency has transferred between 4,000 and 5,000 refugees from the transit camp to a more permanent camp in Kyangwali, 150 kilometers away, where Pottier says there is need to scale up assistance.
     
    “Health facilities, they are 14 in number now," he said. "Within one or two months that population is going to increase with an additional 25,000 refugees, so it means that health facilities and other facilities schools, water facilities, food and shelter — well it is not sufficient. All those facilities will have to scale up in a period let’s say one to two months."
     
    DRC government and U.N. officials have tried for years to subdue the many militia and rebel groups that operate in North Kivu, without real success. M23 captured the provincial capital, Goma, for a brief time last year before retreating.
     
    More fighting was reported Wednesday, raising the prospect that more Congolese civilians will soon be spilling across borders into neighboring countries.

    You May Like

    Ethiopia's Anti-terrorism Law: Security or Silencing Dissent?

    Yonatan Tesfaye was detained in December 2015 on charges under Ethiopia's Anti-Terrorism Proclamation; eleven statements from his Facebook page were used as evidence

    Egypt Orders Trial for Journalists Charged With Harboring Reporters

    Order targets journalists' union chief Yehia Qalash, Khaled al-Balshy and Gamal Abdel Rahim for allegedly spreading false news, harboring fugitive colleagues

    Nigerian Oil Production Falls as Militant Attacks Take Toll

    Country no longer Africa's petroleum king due to renewed militancy in its oil-producing region

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    New Chapter for Tunisia's Ennahdai
    X
    Lisa Schlein
    May 31, 2016 1:56 PM
    Tunisia’s moderate Islamist Ennahda party says it is separating its religious and political activities in a broader bid to mark its so-called Muslim Democratic identity. The move appears to open a new chapter for a party that bounced back from the political wilderness of Tunisia’s pre-revolution days to become a key player in the North African country, and a member of the current coalition government. From Tunis, Lisa Bryant takes a look at how Tunisians are viewing its latest step.
    Video

    Video New Chapter for Tunisia's Ennahda

    Tunisia’s moderate Islamist Ennahda party says it is separating its religious and political activities in a broader bid to mark its so-called Muslim Democratic identity. The move appears to open a new chapter for a party that bounced back from the political wilderness of Tunisia’s pre-revolution days to become a key player in the North African country, and a member of the current coalition government. From Tunis, Lisa Bryant takes a look at how Tunisians are viewing its latest step.
    Video

    Video New Mobile App Allows Dutch Muslims to Rate their Imams

    If a young Dutch-Moroccan app developer has his way, Muslims in the Netherlands will soon be able to rate their imams online. Mohamed Mouman says imams rarely get feedback from their followers. He believes his app can give prayer leaders a better picture of what's happening in their communities — and can also keep young people from being radicalized. Serginho Roosblad reports from Amsterdam.
    Video

    Video Moscow Condemns NATO Plans to Beef Up Defense in Eastern Europe, Baltics

    NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Monday an upcoming "landmark summit" will enhance the alliance's defensive and deterrent presence in eastern Europe and the Baltics. He is visiting Poland ahead of the NATO Summit in Warsaw. Zlatica Hoke reports
    Video

    Video Tech Startups Showcase Wares at Amsterdam Conference

    More than 20,000 tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and lovers of digital technology came together in Amsterdam recently at the Next Web Conference to discuss the latest developments in digital technology, look to the future and, of course, to connect. In recent years, there has been an explosion of so-called startup businesses that have created devices and applications that have changed the way we live; but, as Serginho Roosblad reports for VOA, there are pitfalls for such startups as well.
    Video

    Video US Military's Fallen Honored With Flags

    Memorial Day is a long weekend for most Americans. For some, it is the unofficial start of summer -- local swimming pools open and outdoor grilling season begins. But Memorial Day remains true to its origins -- a day to remember the U.S. military's fallen.
    Video

    Video Rolling Thunder Rolls Into Washington

    The Rolling Thunder caravan of motorcycles rolled into Washington Sunday, to support the U.S. military on the country's Memorial Day weekend
    Video

    Video A New Reading Program Pairs Kids with Dogs

    Dogs, it is said, are man's best friend. What some researchers have discovered is that they can also be a friend to a struggling reader. A group called Intermountain Therapy Animals trains dogs to help all kinds of kids with reading problems — from those with special needs to those for whom English is a second language. Faiza Elmasry has more on the New York chapter of R.E.A.D., or Reading Education Assistance Dogs, in this piece narrated by Faith Lapidus.
    Video

    Video Fan Base Grows for Fictional Wyoming Sheriff Longmire

    Around the world, the most enduring symbol of the U.S. is that of the cowboy. A very small percentage of Americans live in Western rural areas, and fewer still are cowboys. But the fascination with the American West is kept alive by such cultural offerings as “Longmire,” a series of books and TV episodes about a fictional Wyoming sheriff. VOA’s Greg Flakus recently spoke with Longmire’s creator, Craig Johnson, and filed this report from Houston.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video F-35 Fighter Jet Draws Criticisms as Costs Mount

    America’s latest fighter plane, the F-35, has been mired in controversy. Critics cite cost, faulty design, and the attempt to use it to fill multiple roles. Even the pilot’s helmet is controversial. VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports from New York.
    Video

    Video Concerns Over Civilian Suffering as Iraqi Forces Surround Fallujah

    Thousands of residents are trapped inside the IS-held city ahead of a full scale Iraqi offensive aimed at retaking it.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora