Sunday, 2 November 2008

Refugees in the Congo - Africa

Regional war fear as 50,000 homeless in Congo in two days
More than 250,000 people have been made homeless since the latest bout of fighting erupted. In total, aid groups say they are struggling to reach people fleeing fierce fighting between government and rebel forces. The Congolese government has refused to negotiate with the rebels.
Aid workers were unable even to reach the camp, and reports were reaching Goma that its inhabitants had begun to run away. Hundreds of thousands fled Goma, the regional capital which sits on the border with Rwanda , and the surrounding countryside in a mass exodus last week. “People are just trying to stay safe. It’s muddy and wet and a lot of people are sick,” said one local aid worker. The refugees were in desperate need of help. A woman clutching her young children and looking for shelter said: “We are helpless, powerless. “We do not believe anyone will treat us well. I am too afraid to go home, but who will feed us here? We feel abandoned.” The Save the Children charity, which was forced to pull out of Goma after government troops went on the rampage last week, sent an emergency team back into the city yesterday. A priority is reuniting families split up in the chaos.
Read more about this terrible situation here and read the excellent BBC summary, as ever here. Watch the video. WARNING! It is disturbing – think about how YOU would feel in this situation.

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