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Cablegate: Usaid/Dart Update 2 On the Humanitarian

R 201601Z NOV 08
FM AMEMBASSY KINSHASA
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 8807
INFO RWANDA COLLECTIVE
USMISSION GENEVA
USMISSION UN ROME
USEU BRUSSELS
USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
AMEMBASSY NAIROBI
NSC WASHDC
SECDEF WASHDC
SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS KINSHASA 001033


AIDAC

DCHA/AA FOR MHESS, RJENKINS
DCHA/OFDA FOR KLUU, ACONVERY, KCHANNELL, MSHIRLEY
DCHA/FFP FOR TANDERSON, NCOX, TMCRAE
DCHA/OTI FOR KHUBER
AFR FOR KALMQUIST, JWOOD, CTHOMPSON
NAIROBI FOR USAID/OFDA/ARO FOR JMYER, ADWYER
NAIROBI FOR USAID/FFP FOR RDRAPCHO
ROME FOR USUN FODAG FOR RNEWBERG
GENEVA FOR NYKLOH
NSC FOR CPRATT
BRUSSELS FOR USAID PBROWN
NEW YORK FOR DMERCADO

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAID PREF CG
SUBJECT: USAID/DART Update 2 on the Humanitarian
Situation in North Kivu

REF: (A) KINSHASA 0981; (B) KINSHASA 1014


1. Begin summary: As of November 19, the situation in Goma, North
Kivu was calm. On November 18, the National Congress of the Defense
of the People (CNDP) announced plans to pull back approximately 40
km in order to provide a corridor for humanitarian assistance. As
of 0800 hours on November 20, the UN reported that CNDP had pulled
back to Kikuku on the westernmost approach to Kanyabayonga from the
south, and to Kiberizi, having departed Rwindi. In addition, CNDP
has promised to pull back to Mabenga, between Rwindi and Kiwanja,
but the move is still unconfirmed. Humanitarian agencies continue
to conduct assessments, evaluations, and provide assistance to the
hundreds of thousands of internally displaced persons (IDPs)
throughout Eastern Congo. Working in pursuit of that goal, the
USAID Disaster Assistance Response Team (USAID/DART) continues to
liaise with humanitarian partners and UN agencies, to conduct field
assessments, and to plan for additional support and programs in
North Kivu. End summary.

HUMANITARIAN COORDINATION AND INFORMATION
-----------------------------------------

2. At the November 17 coordination meeting between UN agencies,
donors, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), the UN World Food
Program (WFP) reported completed 15-day distributions for
approximately 80,000 people in Rutshuru. Caritas continues to
register beneficiaries, and a distribution for 16,000 additional
beneficiaries is planned for the coming week. During the week of
November 18, WFP, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO),
the Food Security Cluster, and NGOs plan to conduct an evaluation of
Rutshuru, particularly areas that have witnessed significant
movement of populations in recent weeks. In addition, the
International Rescue Committee (IRC) plans to conduct an assessment
in Jomba, North Kivu, in anticipation of a possible non-food item
(NFI) distribution.

3. On November 19, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
reported that approximately 2,000 residents of DRC crossed the
border into Uganda on November 18. With the latest influx of
refugees, UNHCR estimates that more than 14,500 refugees have
arrived in Uganda since the end of August. In previous weeks, the
International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) had been providing
services to DRC IDPs near the Ugandan border, however, the
organization evacuated following a security incident and has not
returned. USAID/DART staff are following the situation and liaising
with USG colleagues covering the movement and situation from
Kampala, Uganda.

4. On November 18, the UN Office for the Coordination of
Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported that IRC evaluations indicate
that 6,919 IDP families are currently located in Goma. The IDPs are
staying with host families and in public places. In coming days,
humanitarian agencies plan to conduct a registration to confirm
IRC's preliminary numbers.

5. On November 18, the UN World Health Organization (WHO) announced
that the strike among health workers ended November 17 and all
health staff returned to work on November 18. WHO also announced a
planned distribution of basic health kits to health centers and
hospitals November 18, prioritizing health facilities that are not
supported by an external agency. The priority list distributed by
WHO includes Zones de sant in Goma, Karisimbi, Kirotshe, and
Mweso.

6. On November 18, the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) announced the
completion of the integrated measles vaccination campaign in Kibati
and Kirotshe. During the campaign, UNICEF vaccinated approximately
12,000 out of a target of 13,000 children in Kirotshe. Numbers are
not available for Kibati. UNICEF plans to commence a similar
campaign in Masisi around November 21.


7. Within the humanitarian community, the conversations regarding
moving the IDPs of Kibati 1 and 2 camps to Mugunga 3 camp continue.
On November 17, the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) announced the
results of surveys conducted in Kibati 1 and 2 camps, asking IDPs
about moving to a safer location. Fifty-nine percent of Kibati 1
residents and 60 percent of Kibati 2 residents responded favorably
to being relocated. USAID/DART staff caution, however, that NRC did
not inform the respondents of the location for the new camp.
According to OCHA, the process of deciding which IDPs will move to
the new camp and how the IDPs will move is ongoing, and no specific
dates have been set. Humanitarian agencies continue to prepare the
Mugunga 3 site, and MONUC planned to commence work on the road to
the camp on November 18. According to a plan by the UNHCR,
vulnerable populations will be transported to the empty spaces in
Mugunga 1 and 2 camps. UNHCR plans to conduct assessments and
survey IDPs during the week of November 18. (NOTE: Kibati and
Mugunga 3 camp are located approximately 8 km apart. END NOTE.)


HUMANITARIAN ASSESSMENTS AND FIELD VISITS
-----------------------------------------

8. On November 17, the USAID/DART Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene
(WASH) Officer traveled to Shasha and Nzulo IDP camps west of Goma.
The multi-agency assessment team included representatives from
UNICEF, WHO, Oxfam, and other NGO partners and planned to conduct
assessments on health and WASH services, and to determine the origin
of local cholera cases.

9. According to the USAID/DART WASH Officer, Shasha Camp holds
approximately 700 households and Solidarities has provided minimal
sanitation services. A more robust response was planned; however,
implementing partners Oxfam and World Vision are conflicting
regarding provision of services.

10. The inter-agency team traveled to the camps in hopes of
investigating whether cholera cases reported in Mugunga 1 camp
originated in Mugunga 1 camp, or whether the cases originated in
Nzulo Camp. According to the assessment team, the cholera cases in
Mugunga 1 Camp are local cases and did not come from Nzulo Camp.
USAID/DART staff noted poor chlorination practices at the local lake
and overt water contamination due to fecal matter at the water
pumping sites.

11. On November 18, USAID/DART staff and other USG personnel
travelled to Minova, South Kivu, to attend an OCHA-run, joint North
and South Kivu Coordination meeting, and to obtain initial
information on the humanitarian situation and needs. According to
participants at the coordination meeting, IRC, World Vision, and
Maltezer have completed registration of North Kivu IDPs in Minova.
As the lead organization for IDP registration, World Vision plans to
verify the numbers and address concerns before confirming the
current count of 6,129 IDP families. Registration is ongoing in
Bweremana, Shasha, and Kitoshe, and official numbers are expected on
November 19.

12. Food distributions in Minova are scheduled to commence on
November 21 and conclude on November 27. During the distribution,
IDPs will receive a complete 30-day ration, although USAID/DART
staff noted that in other parts of North Kivu, WFP has been
distributing 10- and 15-day rations. ICRC will distribute the food
rations for the North Kivu area nearby Minova, and Maltezer will
distribute rations for South Kivu. WFP's South Kivu office is also
considering food distributions for Minova host families.

13. Humanitarian agencies are also planning NFI distributions for
Minova, scheduled to commence on November 20. World Vision and IRC
plan to distribute to beneficiaries in South Kivu, and ICRC plans to
distribute to beneficiaries in North Kivu. In addition, UNHCR plans
to distribute cooking wood through local partners prior to or
following the planned food distribution, but has not yet determined
a distribution date.

14. USAID/DART staff noted concern regarding the level of heavily
armed forces present in Minova. Due to the military presence, NGOs
are concerned that the planned distributions might become incidences
for insecurity, particularly because NGOs excluded the Armed Forces
of DRC (FARDC) dependents from registering for assistance. OCHA and
UNHCR have increased the sensitization campaigns to FARDC and DRC
government officials in Goma, Bukavu, and Minova. Oxfam/Great
Britain (Oxfam/GB) announced plans to provide WASH assistance to the
Minova area; however donors instructed Oxfam/GB to consult with the
cluster lead and other NGOs also interested in providing assistance
in order to avoid conflicts and duplication of services. A WASH
Cluster meeting is scheduled for November 24.

15. During the visit, Medecins sans Frontiers (MSF) noted plans to
stop providing health assistance to all patients except cholera
patients. Dates and reason for discontinuation are unknown. CAP
ANAMUR, a Dutch NGO has volunteered to take over for MSF; however
CAP ANAMUR does not yet have the required documentation to work in
DRC.

16. USAID/DART staff noted no major checkpoints on the road to
Minova, except for the local road maintenance system. In addition,
the FARDC was mostly absent on the road until the team reached
Minova. Throughout the trip, USAID/DART staff noted local people
and humanitarian agencies moving freely and active markets along the
road.

17. According to humanitarian agencies, spontaneous camps have
sprung up near Minova. The camps received some assistance from
UNICEF's Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM) in September, but have not
received anything since that time. During the visit, USAID/DART
staff noted an ongoing registration process in anticipation of
additional assistance. Despite the lack of a food distribution in
the camp, USAID/DART staff noted that IDPs looked relatively healthy
rather than malnourished, perhaps due to good coping mechanisms.


HUMANITARIAN CONCERNS
---------------------

18. Humanitarian agencies continue to enjoy increased access and
continue to travel farther afield to conduct assessments and
interview IDPs. Despite greater access, humanitarian agencies
continue to follow several issues of concern closely. NGOs have
reported incidents of human rights abuses and executions in several
villages throughout North Kivu, including Kiwanja. In response to
the concerns, on November 17 MONUC dispatched a Human Rights, Child
Protection, and Civil Rights Team to Kiwanja to conduct a five-day
assessment. MONUC is also concerned about reports of human rights
abuses in Rwindi.

19. At the November 17 coordination meeting, Solidarities staff
raised a question about Protection Cluster activities, particularly
in Kiwanja and Rutshuru. Although the Cluster is not conducting any
activities, the Solidarities staff underscored the need for
protection work in both areas. UNHCR announced plans to reopen the
Ruthshuru base, and conduct an assessment on November 18 or November
19. USAID/DART staff planned to raise concern with other
implementing partners, UN agencies, and donors on November 18.

20. NGOs continue to report incidents of forced recruitment of
young men from villages throughout Eastern Congo. On November 19,
Handicap International reported 12 cases of CNDP forced recruitment
of young men in Rutshuru and eight in Kiwanja. Another NGO reported
that CNDP was also forcibly recruiting soldiers in Kichanga and many
young men were hiding as a result.


RESPONSE EFFORTS AND RELIEF COMMODITIES
---------------------------------------

21. Between November 12 and 18, USAID's Office of U.S. Foreign
Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA) provided five flights of emergency
relief commodities including a total of 10,000 blankets, 5,400 water
containers, 500 rolls of plastic sheeting, and 5,000 kitchen sets
valued at more than 800,000 USD arrived in Goma. USAID/OFDA
consigned the relief commodities to UNICEF for distribution to
25,000 IDP beneficiaries. In addition, beginning on November 20,
USAID/OFDA plans to deliver overland shipments of 20,000 mosquito
nets, 30,000 sleeping mats, 15,000 kitchen sets, and 40,000
kilograms of soap to Goma. USAID/OFDA plans to consign the
additional emergency relief commodities to UNICEF for distribution
to IDP beneficiaries.

22. A six-person USAID/DART Team based in Goma continues to monitor
population movements and assess humanitarian conditions in North
Kivu Province, facilitate coordination and information sharing among
UN and relief agencies, and work with implementing partners to
address the needs of conflict-affected populations. To date,
USAID/OFDA has provided UNICEF with more than USD 3 million to
support UNICEF's Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM). Since October 2007,
USAID/OFDA has provided more than USD 22 million to the Democratic
Republic of the Congo. USAID/OFDA is supporting programs in
nutrition, health, agriculture, food security, logistics and relief
commodities, economy and market systems, protection, water,
sanitation, and hygiene, and shelter and settlements

GARVELINK

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