KINSHASA - In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, humanitarian colleagues raised deep concerns by the alarming deterioration of the humanitarian situation in North Kivu, in the east of the country, the UN Spokesperson said.

According to OCHA, clashes have resumed in several parts of the towns of Masisi, Rutshuru and Sake. Fresh fighting was moving closer to the city of Kanyabanyonga and displacing civilians, many of whom had sought safety in nearby towns.

The city is hosting more than 100,000 men, women and children who have fled violence in Rutshuru and Masisi, but due to current insecurity in the area, humanitarian efforts there have been suspended, with at least 48,000 people have been cut off from assistance in the past week.

Warring parties must protect civilians: OCHA

The escalating violence risks worsening the already precarious humanitarian situation in North Kivu, which was hosting more than 2.7 million displaced people, the UN Spokesperson said.

On Friday, the UN emergency relief agency, OCHA, called on all parties to the conflict to abide by international humanitarian law and to take immediate steps immediately to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure.

The UN Spokesperson said additional resources to address humanitarian needs in the Congo are desperately and urgently needed. Five months into the year, the annual response plan is just 23 per cent funded, with $591 million in the bank out of $2.6 billion that is needed.

Humanitarian actors reached more than 3.1 million people in the country with vital aid in the first three months of 2024, nearly one quarter of the population they had aimed to serve, he said.