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Democratic Republic of the Congo: 47 children reunited with their families

25-08-2004 News Release 04/99

On 19 August, an ICRC-chartered plane completed a series of trips transferring 19 unaccompanied children from Kinshasa to Goma and 28 from Goma to the capital. ICRC delegates then returned the children individually to their respective families residing in various provinces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Most of these children, between 3 and 18 years of age, had been living apart from their families as a result of the succession of clashes occurring in the east of the country since 1996.

The reunification of families that have been split apart, which requires numerous representations and lengthy tracing operations on the part of the ICRC, is organized on a strictly voluntary basis. ICRC delegates first register the children and then locate their families. Next, they restore contact between the two through the Red Cross message network, which operates throughout the country and is run with the help of volunteers from the Red Cross of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

    

 For further information, please contact:  

 Alec Guichard, ICRC Goma, tel.: ++250 0830 0461  

 Anna Schaaf, ICRC Goma, tel.: ++250 0830 0461  

 Marco Jimenez, ICRC Geneva, tel.: ++4122 730 22 71