Congolese flee in the east of the country. (file photo)
The United Nations World Food Program (WFP) is launching an emergency operation to assist 1.2 million people affected by violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
“It is important not to forget that this crisis in the east is taking place in one of the poorest countries in the world, where 5.4 million people were already facing chronic hunger or malnutrition,” UPI quoted the WFP representative in the DRC, Martin Ohlsen, as saying on Friday.
“In most cases people have left behind their homes, their fields and their livestock, which are the sole source of their food and income,” he said. “They are therefore -- even if they just fled 20 kilometers away from their village -- cut off from any sort of support for their families.”
The WFP said it has launched an appeal for $81 million to fund an emergency operation.
“The new operation, which will target… five provinces, will provide people with high energy biscuits, followed by emergency food rations or, in areas where markets are functioning, cash or vouchers that allow them to purchase their own food,” the WFP said in a press release.