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35,000 Central African Republic refugees identified in DR Congo

KINSHASA, March 28 — The authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) have identified 35,000 refugees from neighboring Central African Republic.

The number has surpassed the 30,000 initially expected in DR Congo's Equateur province, with the influx of 5,000 over the weekend, the authorities disclosed on Wednesday.

The development was reported at a press conference held in Kinshasa by Sylvestre Mudingayi, who is in charge of the public relations department for the UN humanitarian office OCHA.

"The capacity to receive refugees are very limited in Zongo village where the refugees have settled," Mudingayi said, adding that "the humanitarian workers were worried about the worsening of the situation for the local population, especially given the current food crisis and other survival challenges."

He said the UN refugee agency UNHCR had started relocating some of the refugees who arrived recently in Zongo to camps in Worobe village, situated 14 km from Zongo in Equateur province.

In Orientale province, the UNHCR has kicked off the registration of more than 4,200 new refugees from Central African Republic in Ango and Bondo localities. These refugees arrived in the area in December 2012 and on March 25, mostly living with host families.

The UNHCR plans to identify sites around Ango and Bondo or Buta to relocate the refugees with the aid of local authorities.

The refugees fled the conflict in Central African Republic, where the Seleka rebel coalition seized power recently after launching an insurgency in December 2012. (PNA/Xinhua)

HBC/JCF

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