U.N. moving Congo refugees, begins large-scale food delivery

Other News Materials 14 November 2008 19:54 (UTC +04:00)

The U.N. refugee agency plans to move 60,000 Congolese caught between the front lines in the east of the country to a new camp next week, reported CNN.

UNHCR spokesman Ron Redmond says aid agencies will transfer the people from two camps at Kibati to a new site 9 miles west.

Redmond says the decision was taken because of fighting between government forces and rebels in the Kibati area.

He told reporters Friday in Geneva that UNHCR hopes the security situation inside the new camp will be better than that at Kibati.

Aid groups have expressed concern about rape and other forms of violence in the government-controlled camps.

Meanwhile, the United Nations has begun its first large-scale food delivery in eastern Congo's rebel territory since fighting broke out in late October.

World Food Program spokesman Marcus Prior says about 100 tons of food will be delivered to 60,000 civilians in the area north of the provincial capital over the next four days.

Fighting between rebels and soldiers in this mineral-rich part of Congo has caused 250,000 people to flee their homes.

Prior said Friday that although the area has good soil and can grow any number of crops, fear of violence has kept many from harvesting their crops.