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Inside Congo’s “Triangle of Death," a bustling market becomes an oasis of hope

As international attention shifts to neighboring Central African Republic and South Sudan, a humanitarian crisis continues in parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Tens of thousands of people have recently fled their homes due to armed violence in remote areas of Katanga Province.

Story and photos by Tamara Leigh

It takes two days to drive from Lubumbashi, the mining capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo, to Mutabi in Katanga Province, a journey of less than 300 miles (484 km). The two places could not be more different.

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Plane crash in Congo takes the life of Dr. Boubacar Toure

04 Apr 2011 - The International Rescue Committee is profoundly saddened to confirm that Dr. Boubacar Toure, our senior reproductive health advisor in Congo, was among those who died in a United Nations plane crash today in Kinshasa.

Dr. Toure, 63 and a native of Guinea, was an internationally recognized leader in the maternal health field and was deeply committed to reversing high levels of maternal mortality in Congo and other countries where he has worked.

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CAR: "We want to start living again"

Posted by Peter Biro on July 14th, 2010

Prospèr Honagali's plight encapsulates the tragedy of his country. The 50-year-old priest from the Central African Republic lost half of his family -- 15 people -- between 2007 and 2009. Their lives were claimed by violent crime, political conflict and disease, all of which are rampant in this war-torn and deeply impoverished African country.

"Two of my relatives died in attacks by the Zaraguinas," Honagali said, referring to marauding criminal gangs who have taken advantage of the country's political chaos to pillage

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RDC : Education d'urgence - Focus humanitaire No. 5, mai 2010

L'éducation est une composante essentielle de toute réponse humanitaire à une situation d'urgence car l'éducation :

- est un droit fondamental pour tous les enfants et dans les situations d'urgence, les enfants sont souvent privés de ce droit ;

- est essentielle pour le développement normal des enfants ;

- peut aider les enfants à faire face aux répercussions des situations de crise ;

- peut aider à créer un sentiment de normalité pour les enfants et les communautés ;

- est essentielle pour la protection des enfants en offrant un environnement sécurisé ;

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:

To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit http://unocha.org/.

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Primary Education for All: Out of Reach for Congo's Children?

Kinshasa, April 19, 2010-With only five years to go, Congo is far from reaching the millennium development goal of primary education for all by 2015- with nearly half of Congolese children (more than 3 million) still estimated to be out of school and one in three having never stepped into a classroom.

Universal primary education is one of the key Millennium Development Goals and identified as a priority by the Congolese government, yet funding for education programs remains extremely limited.

"International and government investment

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Burundi + 8 others
Hidden and exposed: Urban refugees in Nairobi, Kenya

Executive Summary

The traditional image of life in tented, sprawling camps no longer tells the full refugee story. As the world urbanises, refugees too are increasingly moving to built up areas - including large towns and cities. Today, almost half of the world's 10.5 million refugees reside in urban areas, with only one-third in camps (UNHCR, 2009). Refugees move to the city in the hope of finding a sense of community, safety and economic independence. However, in reality, what many actually find is harassment, physical assault and poverty. Yet there has been scant research

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Afghanistan + 3 others
THE PARTICIPATION OF NGOS IN CLUSTER CO-LEADERSHIP AT COUNTRY LEVEL: A REVIEW OF EXPERIENCE

Introduction

The practice of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) participating in the leadership and management of country level clusters is occurring more frequently in recent years. In several situations, cluster leads are approaching NGOs to take on roles in the cluster, such as coleadership. This review draws on the experiences of NGOs in cluster leadership and management in the four focus countries of the NGOs and Humanitarian Reform Project: Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Zimbabwe. These case studies highlight both the enabling and inhibiting

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Eastern Congo: "We are forced to flee every two months"

Storm clouds are gathering and the wind is tugging at the plastic sheeting covering the hundreds of makeshift shelters that make up the Mungote camp in Congo's troubled North Kivu province. Over 30,000 people live here, unable to work and with little access to food.

The camp sits on a large lava field, a reminder of an earlier eruption by nearby Mount Nyamulagira, one of Africa's most active volcanoes. The black rocks add to the feeling of gloom and despair surrounding what is the largest camp for people displaced by the

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DR Congo: Level of brutality against women and girls in Congo increasing; UN must do more to protect them

Kinshasa 10 Dec 2009 - Women and girls in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo are experiencing increasingly brutal sexual assaults and the UN peacekeeping mission, mandated to protect them, is not doing an adequate job, says the International Rescue Committee, a leading aid group assisting thousands of rape survivors in Congo.

For more than a decade, the bodies of women and girls have been used as a battleground for armed groups waging war in Congo. This year alone, thousands of women and girls have been raped, attacked and abducted in North and South Kivu and the situation is growing

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DR Congo: A deep sadness inside [16 Days]

From November 25 to December 10, the International Rescue Committee is observing the "16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence." You can read all of our 16 Days blog posts here.

Tens of thousands of women and girls have been raped, sexually assaulted, attacked and abducted in the North and South Kivu provinces of eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, targeted by armed groups with unparalleled levels of brutality. The IRC has helped over 40,000 survivors of sexual violence and their families providing emergency

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Eastern Congo: "Women are afraid that they could be raped any night here"

By Peter Biro

Kiwanja, North Kivu, Democratic Reupublic of Congo 25 Nov 2009 - Julie* had just blown out the kerosene lamp and was lying in bed next to her husband when suddenly the stillness of the night was pierced by enraged shouts and the sound of a door being kicked open. Eight armed men burst into her house in a small village in Congo's North Kivu province, wielding machetes and automatic rifles.

"They ran over to my husband first," Julie recalled a few months later as she sat in a rural health clinic run

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DR Congo: Violence against women - we can't look away [16 Days]

2009 marks the 18th anniversary of the "16 days of Activism Against Gender Violence" campaign. The campaign brings together people from around the world to speak out against violence against women. The campaign begins each year on November 25-the International Day Against Violence Against Women-and continues until December 10, International Human Rights Day. These dates were chosen to highlight how violence against women is a serious violation
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DRC: Clinton should highlight rape and justice issues

Need to Protect Civilians Should Top the Agenda During Visit

(Goma, August 10, 2009) - Killings and brutal sexual violence against women, girls and also men have massively increased in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo since the start of military operations in January 2009, the Congo Advocacy Coalition, a group of 88 humanitarian and human rights organizations, said today. The coalition urged Hillary Clinton, the United States secretary of state, who arrives in Congo today, to press the Congolese government and United Nations peacekeepers

Human Rights Watch:



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RD Congo : Hillary Clinton devrait attirer l'attention sur les problèmes de viol et de justice

Le besoin de protection des civils devrait être le point prioritaire à l'ordre du jour de la visite de la secrétaire d'État américaine

(Goma) - Depuis le début des opérations militaires lancées en janvier 2009, le nombre de meurtres et d'actes brutaux de violence sexuelle contre les femmes, les filles, et également les hommes, a considérablement augmenté dans l'est de la République démocratique du Congo, a déclaré aujourd'hui la Congo Advocacy Coalition (Coalition pour le plaidoyer en faveur du Congo), un groupe de 88 organisations humanitaires

Human Rights Watch:



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UN must seize opportunity to end rape in conflict

04 Aug 2009 - The International Rescue Committee yesterday released the following statement calling for the United Nations to step up efforts to prevent and respond to rape in armed conflict:

New York, August 3, 2009 -The United Nations Security Council should live up to its pledge to prevent and punish rape in conflict by using this week's debate on resolution 1820 to develop a concrete action plan to carry it out, says the International Rescue Committee.

The landmark resolution, unanimously adopted just over a year ago, rightfully recognizes sexual violence in

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Uganda + 3 others
US: Pass bill to protect Ugandan civilians

(Washington, DC, May 21, 2009) - The introduction of legislation in the US Senate and House of Representatives earlier this week to commit the United States to comprehensive efforts to help civilians threatened by one of the world's longest-running and brutal insurgencies is a crucial step forward for US policy in the region, a coalition of 22 human rights, humanitarian, and faith-based groups said today.

If passed, the Lord's Resistance Army Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act would require the Obama Administration

Human Rights Watch:



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Etats-Unis : Le Congrès devrait adopter un projet de loi visant à protéger les civils

L'adoption de la loi permettrait d'aider les victimes de l'Armée de Résistance du Seigneur

(Washington, DC) - Le nouveau projet de loi présenté devant le Congrès américain et visant un renforcement des efforts pour aider les civils menacés par l'une des insurrections les plus longues et les plus brutales au monde constitue une avancée cruciale pour la politique américaine dans la région, a déclaré aujourd'hui une coalition de vingt-deux associations des droits humains, humanitaires et basées sur la foi.

Si elle venait à être adoptée, la loi

Human Rights Watch:



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DR Congo: Insecurity, uncertainty and suffering continue for civilians in North Kivu, despite military operations to oust rebels

Goma, Democratic Republic of Congo 28 Feb 2009 - The International Rescue Committee says civilians in eastern Congo's North Kivu province continue to endure chaos, displacement and suffering - with tens of thousands of uprooted people in dire need of food, shelter, water and sanitation.

At least one million people have been forced from their homes in North Kivu as a result of spiraling violence that put this war-weary region on the map once again in late 2008.

A joint Rwandan-Congolese military operation continues in the region, aimed at routing enemy militias. The increased

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IRC continues aid distributions in volatile eastern Congo

North Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo 26 Jan 2009 - An International Rescue Committee team in North Kivu province was able to carry out a delivery of critical supplies, after the launch of a new military offensive last week interrupted humanitarian assistance and raised concern about the safety of civilians.

An emergency team distributed 850 fuel-efficient stoves to displaced women in Nzulu Camp in Masisi territory over the weekend as part of an IRC program to prevent sexual assaults that frequently occur when women leave camps to collect firewood.