DR Congo

Democratic Republic of Congo: Civil Unrest Information Bulletin No. 1

Source
Posted
Originally published
The Federation's mission is to improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity. It is the world's largest humanitarian organization and its millions of volunteers are active in over 181 countries.
In Brief

This Bulletin (no. 01/05) is being issued for information only, and reflects the status of the situation and i n formation available at this time. The Federation is not seeking funding or other assistance from donors f o r this operation at this time.

The Situation

After a long period characterized by armed conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the various stakeholders signed a peace agreement in Sun City (South Africa) in December 2002. According to that agreement, the transitional period was expected to end on or before 30 June 2005 with the organization of free and fair elections. Before that date, the parliament decided to extend the term of office of the transitional government to March 2006, and this provoked dissatisfaction in some opposition leaders who encouraged a general strike on 30 June 2005. Some of the demonstrations turned violent and it was reported that 26 persons were killed (1 in Kinshasa, 15 in Mbuji Mayi, five in Goma, and five in Tshikapa), and 86 were wounded. (Source: DRC Red Cross). Today, the situation is progressively returning to normal in Kinshasa and in other parts of the country.

Red Cross and Red Crescent Action

Reacting to the situation, the DRC Red Cross exercised its contingency plan with the support of the Federation's Delegation in Kinshasa, ICRC, and the Belgian Red Cross. Concretely, the DRC Red Cross mobilized close to 1,010 volunteers (520 in Kinshasa, 160 in Mbuji Mayi, and 330 in the rest of the country), and positioned them in strategic points to help evacuate wounded persons to health centres.

The support of the Federation, ICRC, and the Belgian Red Cross to the DRC Red Cross included logistics (vehicles), care of volunteers involved in the operation, and the provision of emergency equipment (stretchers, first-aid kits, radio handsets, etc.).

Coordination

A national coordination committee presided over by the Minister of Health has been set up. The members of that committee include the DRC Red Cross, the Federation, ICRC, WHO, and the Ministry of Health. Similar committees have also been set up at provincial levels.

MSF Belgium offered four dressing kits to the DRC Red Cross; WHO and UNICEF pre-positioned drugs in health centres, and the government (through the Ministry of Health) mobilized medical staff for the treatment of injured persons.

Needs

Short term needs include emergency equipment (stretchers, first-aid kits, etc.), logistics(vehicles, motor bikes, and communication means). These have been indicated in the contingency plan

For further information specifically related to this operation please contact:

In DRC: Matthieu Musepulu, Secretary General, Red Cross of DR Congo; Email: matmusep@yahoo.fr; Phone +243.98.22.52.14 =B7 n I DRC: Kinvi Adodo AMOUSSOU, Federation Acting Head of Congo Delegation, Kinshasa; Email: hod.kinshasdel@wireless.ifrc.org; Phone +243.81.880.1489 =B7 n I Geneva: Madeleine Lundberg, Federation Regional Officer for West and Central Africa, Africa Dept.;Email: Madeleine.lundberg@ifrc.org ; Phone +41.22.730.4335; Fax +41.22.733.0395

All International Federation assistance seeks to adhere to the Code of Conduct for the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO's) in Disaster Relief and is committed t o the Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Disaster Response (Sphere) in delivering assistance to t h e most vulnerable.

For longer-term programmes in this or other countries or regions, please refer to the Federation's Annual Appeal. For support to or for further information concerning Federation programmes or operations in this or other countries, or for national society profiles, please also access the Federation's website at http://www.ifrc.org