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DRC refugees protest against violence

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DRC refugees protest against violence


Aid workers in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo are to move tens of thousands of refugees to prevent them from being caught up in crossfire between rebels and the army.

More than 65,000 civilians fleeing weeks of fighting have taken refuge in a camp in Kibati, outside the capital of the troubled province of North Kivu.

Fighting has prevented some aid from reaching the refugees. The World Health Organisation says it only has enough medication to last a month.

Conflicting reports are emerging about the strategic town of Kanyabayonga, a key passage towards the north of the embattled province, where aid workers have denounced looting and rape.

In the provincial capital of Goma, women took to the streets on Friday to denounce the growing violence against them:

“We women are getting raped by army and police forces. It has to end and we are ready as women to fight to have this stopped,” said one protestor.

Although the United Nations has deployed its strongest peacekeeping force ever in the DRC, it appears its soldiers are unable to protect the hundreds of thousands of displaced civilians from killings, lootings and rape in North Kivu.

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