Inside Story

What can be done to save children in DRC from starvation?

UNICEF warns that 400,000 children in the Democratic Republic of Congo could die from hunger.

Armed conflicts continue to have devastating consequences for the children in the Kasai region of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

UNICEF says around 400,000 children are facing the imminent threat of death from starvation, and warn the number will “skyrocket” unless urgent action is taken to boost the humanitarian response.

The agency wants $88m to fund its programmes there. In December, the UN declared the crisis at the highest level – the same as Yemen, Syria and Iraq.

The Kasai region descended into violence in 2016 over a power dispute between a local chief and government authorities.

There’s also been fighting between anti-government groups and forces loyal to President Joseph Kabila, who failed to step down in 2016, when his last term in office officially ended.

So what can be done to help these children?

Presenter: Peter Dobbie


Okito Tongomo – president of the Congolese Support Group in the UK

Fidel Bafilemba – independent consultant on DRC affairs

Alex Vines – head of the Africa Programme at Chatham House