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France to release aid to refugees from DR Congo's Dongo flare

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KINSHASA, Jan. 12 (Xinhua) -- The French government will release 200,000 euros (more than 280,000 U.S. dollars) in aid to 106,674 refugees taking shelter in the Republic of Congo after fleeing the recent Dongo flare in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo).

Citing the UN sources in Brazzaville, a radio station in DR Congo said on Monday that French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner made the offer at a weekend meeting with UN officials in the Congolese capital city.

Kouchner, who refused to talk to the media after the meeting, instead left "the information to be given by President Denis Sassou Nguesso," the radio said. The French minister had previously visited Kinshasa, where he was met by President Joseph Kabila and his Prime Minister Adolphe Muzito.

According to a UN official in Brazzaville, the money promised by France will essentially be used for the purchase of food-stuffs and domestic kits.

Paris also asked humanitarian organizations to use the services of their army based in Libreville in Gabon for logistical support, especially transportation of food items and medical kits to the refugee sites.

During his African trip, Kouchner urged a speedy resolution to the humanitarian crisis in Dongo, in DR Congo's northwestern province of Equateur, declaring that the aid from France would be coming immediately.

A tribal war broke out in late October before turning into a form of insurgency, killing hundreds of people including police officers and displacing tens of thousands of people. The military of DR Congo says it has defeated the insurgents and brought the situation under control.

Editor: Xiong Tong