Millions of kids risk death in crisis-torn DRC

DRC’s tormented childrenFrom JEAN KASSONGO in Kinshasa, DRC
KINSHASA, (CAJ News) – MORE than 2 million children are at risk of death from starvation and disease as humanitarian agencies flee conflict-torn regions in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
For many years, humanitarian agencies working on food security and health care have been providing a safety net for millions of displaced people.
Among the organisations that have departed is the Doctors Without Borders which has been operational in the country for over 35 years.
“The decision to leave is driven by the need to focus limited resources on
areas severely affected by violence and insecurity,” said Francisco Otero
Villar, the organisation’s head of mission in South Kivu.
For the organisation, the decision to leave is difficult but needs in a
country like the DRC are so enormous that it is forced to direct its
limited resources towards activities that can save the maximum number of lives.
The nutrition crisis in the South Kivu is chronic and requires a
comprehensive response, Villar said.
“Equally, longer-term solutions to improve food security are urgently
needed, requiring greater involvement from development organizations.”
Doctors Without Borders teams discovered an astonishing number of severely undernourished children there during a massive measles vaccination campaign.
Malnutrition is widespread in the DRC, with approximately two million
severely wasted children in the country.
“The situation far exceeded international emergency thresholds, with
severe acute malnutrition rates of three percent in many localities,” said
Villar.
Full-scale conflict has subsided in South Kivu in recent years, but armed
groups continue to be a source of instability in the region.
During frequent clashes between these factions and the national army,
entire families are forced to flee.
– CAJ News

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Posted by on Aug 28 2017. Filed under Africa & World, Featured, National, News, Regional. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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