Terrible Human Toll Of A Forgotten War The World Ignores

Thousands are dying without reason and with the world ignoring their please for help while terror attacks striking the hearts of major cities grip  headlines.

The forgotten war in the Democratic Republic of Congo is shattering lives as at least 3,000 have died and more than a million have lost their homes.

And no one seems to know or care.

Humanitarian workers trying to bring relief to wounded and displaced believe the rest of the world has given up on what is happening and is only paying scant attention following the kidnapping and killing of a US and Swedish aid workers.

“A woefully inadequate number of aid agencies are on the ground and a pitiful amount of money is pledged to deal with the humanitarian crisis triggered by the deadly conflict in Congo’s Kasai region,” says Ulrika Blom, the Congo country director at the Norwegian Refugee Council.

Villages razed

The United Nations called for the world to donate $65 million to ease the plight of refugees in the poor African country.

By April, only $5.2 million was provided.

The troubles started a year ago when a tribal chief in the Kasai region of the country called for a revolt when the national government refused to recognise his authority.

The chief was killed by government forces in August, but his followers have kept fighting.

Blom says at least 1.3 million refugees have lost their homes and livelihoods during the fierce fighting that has seen villages razed to the ground.

Children forced to fight

Many are children who have been suborned into taking up arms, while tens of thousands have fled to safety in neighbouring Angola.

The civil strife is part of a wider insurgency against President Joseph Kabila, who has clung to power since 2001 and was due to step down in 2016 but refused to leave office.

Elections are planned for later this year, but the Congo has a poor track record with democracy and human rights despite the hopeful sounding formal name of the country.

Meanwhile, thousands are dying and tens of thousands homeless and the world ignores their cries for help.