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One of the largest humanitarian Crises: Rebel group attacks Kivu region for gold and minerals



DRC's Flag, Photo Courtesy of Britannica.com


By Steph Wetzel


The Masisi territory of the Kivu region has been experiencing immense conflict since early February. The dire situation has led to many individuals injured, displaced or killed. According to reliefweb.int, residents of Sake, Masisi territory and Goma were accidentally shot while fleeing the area.


One of the rebel groups in eastern DRC, known as the 23 March Movement (M23) rebels, began attacking communities outside of Goma. According to apnews.com, explosives were set off in the Kivu region. Residents began fleeing the area, uncertain of where to go next. 


Apnews.com also reported that individuals that came to provide aid and support were forced to stop due to the fact that bombs were going off at any given time, their own safety was compromised. Reliefweb.int reported that they also had limited shelters for citizens who were fleeing. Sake residents were fleeing to Goma, no longer feeling safe in the area. These mass killings are a result of the desire for the region’s gold and other mineral resources. 


The UN, press.un.org, reported that since the continuation of the fighting between the Armed Forces of the Democratic of the Congo (FARDC) and M23 from December 2023, citizens in several areas including Sake, Goma and the capital of North Kivu Province are left in extreme peril. 


According to apnews.com, attacks on civilians have intensified and M23 has attempted to conquer more territory after the UN and regional peacekeepers were requested by the government to withdraw. They also reported that the Congolese President, Felix Tshisekedi, has struggled to end the violence and that he has accused Rwanda of providing military aid to the rebel group. Finally, they concluded that this has led to one of the largest humanitarian crises with likely over 7 million citizens displaced.


According to The Guardian, as of May 3rd, bombs that hit the camps Lac Vert and Mugunga, both near Goma, killed 12 individuals and injured more than twenty (20). M23 has moved closer to Goma over the past few months. Mostly women and children were harmed.


The Guardian also stated that President Tshisekedi believes that Rwanda is supporting M23, a claim that Rwanda denies. French President, Emmanuel Macron, backed President Tshisekedi in a press conference held in Paris. The U.S. is also strongly concerned about the bombings and M23 conquering eastern Congo. According to BBC, the U.S. has blamed Rwanda and the M23 rebel group for the bombings in the DRC. They stated that approximately nine people, seven of which were children, were killed in the bombing of the Mugunga camp in Goma.


We continue to monitor the conflict in North Kivu as well as the safety of the children at GUAOA Orphanage. We will continue to keep you informed. If you would like to help provide warm meals to the children at the orphanage, please donate here.


Thank you for your support!

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