WFP scales up relief in DRC amid renewed violence

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The World Food Programme (WFP) has scaled up its relief operation for conflict-displaced people in northeast Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), a UN spokesman said.

At a press briefing, UN secretary-general’s spokesman Stephane Dujarric said renewed inter-ethnic violence in the region has forced tens of thousands or more from their homes and increased the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance.

According to WFP, the DRC is the world’s second largest hunger crisis after Yemen, with 13 million people having food insecurity, and 5 million of whom are malnourished children.

In Ebola-afflicted Ituri province, where the spike in clashes between ethnic groups has claimed at least 160 lives in recent weeks, WFP intends to triple life-saving food and cash assistance to 300,000 internally displaced people, said Dujarric.

The UN food agency is planning to assist 5.2 million people in the DRC this year.