13.04.2018 | Press Release

A catastrophic famine is looming in Eastern Congo

Actually, the country could feed itself, but peolpe have to flee their villages time and again.

People walking on a street in Congo
The so called "feeder roads" are important for rural Congo. The untarred streets connect villages with small markets. © Kai Löffelbein/Welthungerhilfe
Simone Pott Team Communications

Bonn, 12/04/2018. On the occasion of the international donor conference on the Democratic Republic of Congo starting tomorrow, Welthungerhilfe highlights the dramatic situation in the east of the country. In the provinces of Ituri, Kivu and Kasai alone, nearly 5 million people are suffering from acute hunger. A total of 13 million people in the Congo are dependent on humanitarian assistance. Half of all children under five are undernourished. There has been heavy fighting in Eastern Congo for nearly 20 years between different rebel groups, which attack the local population with extreme brutality.

“A catastrophic famine is looming in Eastern Congo. Actually this country, which is the size of Western Europe, could feed itself and be the breadbasket of Africa. It has a lot of fertile arable land and it is rich in natural resources. However, time and again people have to flee their villages and there is nobody left to tend the fields. Many families flee in fear to other parts of the country or cross the border to Uganda. Without political stability and an end to the ongoing fighting, the number of those going hungry will increase further”, says Georg Dörken, long-serving Country Director in DR Congo.

Welthungerhilfe has been active in the Democratic Republic of Congo since 1997. It supports people through humanitarian assistance, invests in agriculture and infrastructure, and implements projects to offer the country income and prospects. 

Georg Dörken is available for interviews.

Welthungerhilfe is one of the largest private aid organisations in Germany; politically independent and non-denominational. It is fighting for “Zero Hunger by 2030”. Since it was founded in 1962, more than 8,500 overseas projects in 70 countries have been supported with 3.27 billion euros. Welthungerhilfe works on the principle of help for self-help: from fast disaster relief to reconstruction and long-term development cooperation projects with national and international partner organisations.

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