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UN Human Rights Chief Volker Turk warns the world not to forget the continually escalating conflict in Eastern DRC.

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Griffith Sarah

Apr 18, 2024

Background of the Conflict in North Kivu

As the situation develops, the international community's renewed focus on Eastern DRC could play a pivotal role in mitigating the violence and supporting a path to stability. With the UN's involvement, there is hope for advancing peace initiatives and providing necessary aid to the affected populations.
The United Nations Human Rights Commissioner, Volker Turk

GOMA, DRC — The United Nations Human Rights Commissioner, Volker Turk, urged the international community to refocus its attention on the escalating violence in North Kivu Province, Eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), during his visit to an internally displaced persons camp near Goma.

Amid his official tour, initiated at the request of the Congolese government, Turk emphasized the critical need for concerted efforts towards peace.

"We must work extremely hard for peace to be achieved," he stated after meeting with victims displaced by the ongoing conflict with March 23 Movement (M23) rebels.

The M23 group, involved in heightened conflicts since January, has expanded its control, capturing key towns and causing significant disruptions in North Kivu. Turk's itinerary includes crucial discussions with President Felix Tshisekedi and other high-ranking officials in Kinshasa, aiming to address the root causes of these conflicts.


Background of the Conflict in North Kivu

The M23 rebels, primarily active in North Kivu, have intensified their military actions, leading to major territorial gains and a concerning proximity of armed conflicts to displacement sites. This situation has escalated criminal activities and led to substantial displacement of communities, making areas like Rutshuru and Masisi the epicenters of the crisis.


International Response and the Role of UN Peacekeepers

In response to the crisis, UN peacekeepers have been actively involved in rescue and relief operations, including the recent liberation of five civilians abducted in the region. However, the ongoing violence has not only affected the DRC but also contributed to increasing tensions in neighboring regions, including Burundi.

As the situation develops, the international community's renewed focus on Eastern DRC could play a pivotal role in mitigating the violence and supporting a path to stability. With the UN's involvement, there is hope for advancing peace initiatives and providing necessary aid to the affected populations.


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