The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is very concerned about the humanitarian situation in the eastern DRC, especially in the provinces of Ituri, northern and southern Kivu, which are estimated to have about 1.7 million people.
Patrick Youssef, Africa’s head of the ICRC, concludes a week-long visit to the Democratic Republic of Congo. Together with RFI, he is worried about the rise of the military offensive and the insufficient supply of care. An offer of care that the ICRC helps to strengthen in Béni.
“I was at the Beni referral hospital where the ICRC had no presence there – we were quite inside Goma – and there we were facing a massive influx of war wounds. And so it is one of the priorities that the ICRC continues to invest resources and, above all, equipment and supplies. Afterwards, there is also a major problem that has worsened considerably, especially through recurring attacks in health structures. The lack of access to health care in affected communities poses many problems. And I would also say that the number one priority remains respect for international humanitarian law. ”
When asked if he fears that there will be slips with the siege permit, the ICRC’s head of Africa considers that “the siege permit as such has no real influence. It is the offensive, and therefore the attacks, that are now real and that are being carried out together with MONUSCO’s forces that can, of course, have an impact. It is a legitimate complaint that is also shared by the authorities “.
The return of the displaced from the Nyiragongo volcano Patrick Youssef ended his week-long visit to the Democratic Republic of Congo through Goma, the provincial capital of northern Kivu. Three months after the outbreak in Nyiragongo, he noticed that many displaced people returned to Goma. The population is still traumatized by the awakening of the volcano, he admits, but according to him, their situation is normalizing.
“Those I spoke to gave the impression that a semblance of normality is returning to Goma, even though the risk of an outbreak is still in people’s minds. “The trauma of what happened and the massive, chaotic, chaotic evacuation from the beginning still left many, many traces on the population and on the people we spoke to,” he said.