Congo Watch: DRC: World's Most Neglected Emergency

Thursday, April 07, 2005

DRC: World's Most Neglected Emergency

Here is a copy of a post at the new IRC blog [see the amazing photo Kathleen Sands has published at her post]:

The IRC and sister agencies are calling the ongoing crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo "the world's most neglected emergency," pushing for a stronger mandate for U.N. peacekeepers in the country.

Despite a tenuous peace agreement and the installation of a transitional government in 2003, much of this huge country remains dangerously insecure.

The U.N. Security Council's vote last week to extend the peacekeepers' mission in Congo comes at time of increasing violence. The ongoing insecurity and a widespread breakdown of the overall health infrastructure mean that over 30,000 people are dying every month from easily preventable and treatable diseases.

"The international response to the humanitarian crisis in Congo has been grossly inadequate in proportion to need," says IRC's health director, Dr. Rick Brennan. "Our findings show that improving and maintaining security and increasing simple, proven and cost-effective interventions such as clean water, immunizations and basic medical care would save hundreds of thousands of lives in Congo.

"There's no shortage of evidence. It's sustained compassion and political will that is lacking."

Posted By: Kathleen Sands | Africa, Emergency Response, Health


Blogger giornalista said...

Tragic, yet not enough to disturb Joe and Jane Sixpack from their weekly dose of "reality TV"-schlock like the comically-titled Survivor.

Incidentally, sorry for neglecting your comment on my Hotel Rwanda-inspired diatribe. I'll try to check in more often and spread the word about your blogs. Damn good reading.

Reminds me of the activist- journalist moto: "To comfort the afflicted, and afflict the comfortable."

Cheers, from Montreal.

Thursday, April 07, 2005  
Blogger Cynthia said...

I think if Africans are going to survive, their own people better take the lead. I've been investigating the alleged HIV/AIDS epidemic in Africa, and it is readily apparent that it is a farce. Africa is plagued as you mentioned by many treatable diseases that could be prevented. It is up to the citizens of Africa to stop its own violence (genocide). It appears those who can do something won’t because they don’t care enough about Africa or Africans to get involved. I realize that many African leaders are corrupt, but those leaders could not be in power unless many citizens, some of whom may either be related to you or related to others that you know - are keeping these corrupt leaders in office despite their misdeeds. This is the reality of the situation.

Saturday, April 09, 2005  
Blogger Ingrid said...

Giornalista, thanks for stopping by and commenting. Sorry I have not been able to reply right away. I am juggling several blogs at the moment and cannot keep up with it all. Thanks so much for the links and kind words and interesting comments. The material I am publishing here is grim to say the least, so it's always good to get a reaction from someone. As soon as I get more time, I will respond to comments in a more meaningful way. Until then, bye for now, and thanks again.

Cynthia, I agree with you completely but fear it may be hundreds of years before enough African people take the lead. I agree it is up to the citizens of Africa to stop its own violence but when you read the latest report by Hilary Anderrson from the BBC - it seems pretty hopeless when faced with such barbarians and savagery and backward thinking. I agree that it appears those who can do something won't because they don't care enough to get involved - but in their defence I have to say Africa is a tinder box that could explode at any time: Europeans intervening militarily into Africa could spark the fire. It's pretty hard going trying to help Africa - they appear to resent the help and want to provide their own solutions but at the same time receive the West's money ... money is not always the answer to everything (more on this at a later date).
if the situation was reversed, do you think Africa would go to similar lengths to help Europeans? Somehow, I don't think so. Your comment does not say what it will take for the citizens of Africa to stop its own violence. Why do they not care enough about Africa or Africans to get involved?

Saturday, April 09, 2005  

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