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Democratic Republic of the Congo - North Kivu - Flash Update #6: Humanitarian situation in Rutshuru Territory - 27th May 2022

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The humanitarian situation in Rutshuru and Nyiragongo territories remains critical since the outbreak of clashes between the Congolese army and alleged M23 fighters on 19 May. According to humanitarian sources, at least 61,000 people have been displaced by the fighting; over 45,000 of them moved to Buvira, Kibati, and Munigi, in Nyiragongo Territory, and to the northern neighborhoods of Goma. The majority live in churches and schools and other makeshift shelters; others have settled in sites (Bujari, Kanyaruchinya and Kibati) originally constructed for households affected by last year’s volcanic eruption; others have opted to “live” along the main road.

Humanitarian needs are increasing: access to water, food, shelter, health care and other necessities remains very limited. Today in preparation for aid distributions, humanitarian actors visited sites between Kibati and Goma where displaced people are living. Two water tanks have been installed by the International Committee of the Red Cross in the Kanyaruchinya site to increase the supply of drinking water; the World Food Program and its partners plan to start distributing food to around 46,000 people tomorrow 28 May. The newly displaced in Kanyaruchinya are receiving free health care through the temporary hospital which was set up last year during the volcanic eruption - the influx of people calls for an urgent supply of medicines.

Since the beginning of the crisis in March 2022, humanitarian actors have distributed aid in Rutshuru town and south of the Rutshuru-Bunagana road where most of the displaced have settled. The road linking Goma to Rutshuru, which was closed at the start of the fighting, remains inaccessible to humanitarian organizations, leading to the suspension of some activities.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs: To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.