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CARE Statement on Escalation of Violence in Eastern DRC

“CARE is deeply alarmed by the escalation of violence in eastern DRC, particularly the recent takeover of Kanyabayonga, Kayna, and Kirumba. This conflict puts countless civilians, especially women and girls, at risk. We are particularly concerned about an increase in Gender-based violence. All parties to the conflict must prevent the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war. Brutal attacks against civilians, humanitarian workers, and humanitarian vehicles constitute violations of international humanitarian law.

CARE’s operations in the region, as well as local and international Organizations, have been considerably affected. This situation has forced the evacuation of most staff for safety reasons and programs have been temporarily suspended. For CARE, this disruption is impacting the delivery of essential health services to already highly vulnerable populations.

CARE calls for an immediate cessation of hostilities and urges all parties to prioritise the protection of civilians, and civilian assets and to facilitate the safe unhindered access of humanitarian personnel to people in need, in full compliance with international humanitarian law. The world cannot stand by while innocent lives hang in the balance.”

– Abdoulaye Zongo, CARE DRC, Acting Country Director

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