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Democratic Republic of the Congo: Bonheur returns to his family

21-11-2003 News Release 03/148

Bonheur Mitutsho was placed in the care of his uncle Masumbuko two days ago in the Congolese city of Goma. The 12-year-old boy moved with his family from Goma to the capital Kinshasa in 1997.

When war broke out the following year and Bonheur’s father went missing, his mother left to search for her husband, entrusting her son to friends. But she never returned; no one knows what happened to her. Bonheur’s host family eventually contacted the ICRC and several months later his uncle was traced in Goma.

This week Bonheur was one of 10 children who were flown from Kinshasa to join their families in the east of the country. Yesterday the ICRC flew another group of children, this time numbering 26, in the other direction to be reunited with their loved ones.

Since the beginning of November the ICRC has reunited a total of 64 unaccompanied children with their families in the Congo. The total since the year began is almost 1,000.

 For further information, please contact:  

 Elizabeth Twinch, ICRC Goma, tel. ++250 08 30 04 61  

 Alex Guichard, ICRC Bukavu, ++250 08 30 04 51