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DateLine Friday, 26 December 2008

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Attacks against Congo aid staff on the rise: UN

CONGO: Attacks against aid workers in the Democratic Republic of Congo are becoming more common, a UN agency said yesterday, pleading for security guarantees to be given to humanitarian staff.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said a total of 104 incidents involving aid workers had been reported in 2008 and two staff had been killed.

“In 2008, there has been an increase in attacks against humanitarian personnel in Nord-Kivu province, especially since the resumption of fighting in the territories of Rutshuru and Masisi,” OCHA spokesman Ivo Brandau told AFP. Fighting since August 28 between government troops and Laurent Nkunda’s rebel forces has displaced more than 250,000 people in the eastern Nord-Kivu province. Nkunda’s forces have inflicted heavy losses on the Congolese army. Kinshasa, Thursday

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