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Goma: The Red Cross reunites members of separated families

24-01-2002 News Release 02/06

Geneva/Goma, 24 January 2002 - The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Red Cross of the Democratic Republic of the Congo have so far reunited 23 parents and children separated during the population movements following last week's volcano outbreak. About 100 unaccompanied children have been located by the population or by Congolese Red Cross volunteers. The Red Cross is providing temporary shelter and care for them while trying to trace their families using local radio stations and the network of Red Cross volunteers.

Meanwhile, the ICRC and the local water company, Regideso, have begun reparing Goma's water distribution network. Only about 30 per cent of the pipes are currently in working order but according to ICRC engineers it should be possible to restore 80 per cent of the network within two weeks. As an interim measure, the ICRC is trucking drinking water to four distribution points in Goma while also providing chlorine for 20 different water collection sites along the shores of Lake Kivu.

The ICRC and its Red Cross partners are constantly monitoring the humanitarian situation in Goma and are ready to provide further assistance where needed.