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According to UNHCR, Beni town is home to around 500,000 people. “We understand there’s at least 275,000 people in the surrounding areas who’ve already been displaced, and conditions are quite dire and deteriorating,” Mr. Yaxley said.
Armed groups preying on children
Children need immediate support, he continued, as many “have lost their parents or have arrived unaccompanied. Forced recruitment by armed groups is a real threat to the safety of children and women also face widespread sexual violence, abuse and risk of exploitation.”
The development comes as people in eastern DRC continue to be targeted by a multitude of armed groups, with at least 100 people reportedly killed in violent attacks in the Beni region and thousands displaced since 2 November, UNHCR said.
Highlighting the impact of the insecurity in Beni and Oicha on frontline health workers tasked with tracing anyone who has come into contact with people infected with Ebola, Christian Lindmeier, spokesperson for the UN World Health Organization (WHO), said that surveillance levels had dropped from 86 to 59 per cent at the start of the week.