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Democratic Republic of the Congo: Thirty-six children reunited with parents in Kinshasa and Goma

07-03-2002 News Release 02/10

An ICRC aircraft delivered 28children to their waiting families in Kinshasa on 27February. The next day, the same plane took eight other children to Goma to be reunited with their parents living in the eastern part of the country.

Keeping families together is a principle enshrined in international humanitarian law. The ICRC does its utmost to uphold this principle, tracing missing persons and, where possible, reuniting them with their families. Many unaccompanied children have been separated from their parents by the fighting in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Working together with the country's National Red Cross Society, the ICRC strives to reunite those children with their parents or place them with other persons able to take care of them.

After returning from Goma, the ICRC aircraft flew to Kigali with three Rwandan soldiers who had been held at Kinshasa's Penitentiary and Rehabilitation Centre. They had been regularly visited by ICRC delegates and had expressed the wish to return to their country of origin.