Aid arrives in Rutshuru as the UN tries to broker peace

Now Reading:

Aid arrives in Rutshuru as the UN tries to broker peace

Text size Aa Aa

Much needed medical supplies and water purification tablets have arrived in the rebel-held town of Rutshuru in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Some camps which had held tens of thousands of displaced people were found to be virtually empty – many had fled, fearing further unrest.

But word has got out that aid is getting through and people are heading back to the town, desperate for food.

Officials estimate that tens of thousands of people are still living rough, in need of shelter, food and medical care. They are warning of a humanitarian catastrophe.

Rwanda has denied Congolese government claims that it backs the Tutsi-led rebels who now control most of the easern DRC. The Presidents of both countries have agreed to attend a regional summit.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon says he will nominate former Nigerian President Olusegan Obasanjo as his special envoy to help resolve the crisis.

The UN has a 17,000-strong force in the country, its biggest mission in the world, but observers say it is struggling to contain the conflict.

Several top UN officials have vehemently rejected suggestions that peacekeepers have failed to protect civilians caught up in the fighting.