FAO/GIEWS - Foodcrops & Shortages 02/02 - CONGO, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF (5 February)

CONGO, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF* (5 February)

The eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano on 17 January resulted in loss of life, 87 500 people made homeless in the eastern city of Goma, severe damage to infrastructure and the displacement of some 300 000 people - out of a population of 500 000 in Goma - to neighbouring Rwanda. The majority have returned to Goma and an estimated 340 000 people need emergency food assistance. The United Nations has appealed for assistance for the victims of the catastrophe and for reconstruction of the city of Goma, 40 percent of which is estimated to have been seriously damaged by lava flows. This includes an FAO appeal for US$1.35 million to provide agricultural tools and seeds of fast-growing vegetables to 6 000 affected farmers.

Elsewhere in the country, economic and agricultural activities continue to be disrupted by the persistent civil conflict. Up to 16 million people or one-third of the country’s population are estimated to be seriously food insecure. In particular, the food and nutritional situation of over 2 million internally displaced is alarming. Delivery of humanitarian assistance to this population is hampered by insecurity, mainly in eastern parts.