Protection of civilians major concern in North Kivu

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Thousands of people have been displaced by fighting in North Kivu, Democratic Republic of the Congo. Photo: OCHA/Imane Cherif

The protection of civilians remains a major concern in North Kivu in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, according to the UN humanitarian agency, OCHA.

The agency says that over the past few days, 2,000 children while on their way to school have been forced to pay money to armed men in the Busumba and Mpati areas in the Territory of Masisi.

In addition, accusations are mounting against soldiers of the FARDC, the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo for allegedly levying illegal taxes against civilians and forcing them to carry military hardware or work for them.

OCHA says years of instability have made the province very insecure for civilians and for aid workers.

An estimated 914,000 people have been displaced in North Kivu since 2009, 50 per cent of them since April 2012 when fighting started between the national army and the M-23 armed movement.

Gerry Adams, United Nations.

Duration: 1’06″

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