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DRC: Two die from lightning strikes at displaced persons camp

Displaced persons camp   -  
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Democratic Republic Of Congo

Two people died from lightning strikes on Monday in a displaced persons camp in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

More than 260,000 people have been forced to flee their homes due to recent fighting between government forces and M23 rebels, according to assessments by the United Nations.

The camp Kanyaruchinya, just north of Goma city, is only 20 kilometres (12 miles) from the frontlines of the fighting. One of the victims was a pregnant woman who had stepped out from her tent when she was struck. Another was a young child.

The bodies of the victims have been brought to the provincial morgue in Goma to await the funeral.

Grieving families of the victims asked for help from the government.

"May the government help us with assistance because we are suffering a lot, the displaced are suffering, we have no food, and the suffering is getting worse every day," said Byamungu Sigrezambo, father of one of the victims.

Other displaced people living in this site remain worried about tough living conditions.

The fresh fighting between the M23 rebels and the Congolese army and its allies in the territory of Rutshuru, has forced tens of thousands to take refuge in informal sites in Kanyaruchinya and in the surrounding localities.

Aid workers said an urgent international response is needed and are looking for 50-million US dollars to fund its work here for the next six months.

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