Internally Displaced Leave Camps, Return Home in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo

IOM and its Camp Coordination and Camp Management (CCCM) Cluster partners have organized the consolidation and closure of the Shasha and Lac Vert displacement sites located respectively in Masisi Territory and the outskirts of Goma, North Kivu, in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. The operation, which followed consultations with the 1,054 internally displaced people (IDPs) affected, gave residents the choice of integrating in their displacement area, returning to their place of origin, resettling elsewhere in the province or transferring to another camp. While 2% of the individuals chose to be transferred to one of three other displacement sites - Mugunga 1, Mugunga 3 and Bulengo - the vast majority decided to return to their communities of origin or settle elsewhere. IOM, together with UNHCR, WFP, FAO and others CCCM partners, provided them with non-food and food assistance, as well as seeds and agricultural tools, to facilitate their reintegration. This year, five displacement sites of North Kivu, representing 3,012 IDPs, have been closed - two in in Goma Town, two in Masisi and one in Rutshuru Territories. In August 2013 almost 160,000 people were displaced and fled to IDP camps around Goma, following clashes between M23 rebels and the Congolese army. Currently, only 13,000 people remain in the camps around Goma. The process of site consolidation and closure is part of the overall 2013-2016 CCCM strategy in North Kivu. The process was facilitated by an improvement of the security situation in the IDPs' areas of origin, and a significant decrease in humanitarian assistance in the camps. There are still nearly 700,000 IDPs in North Kivu. About 185,000 live in the 53 displacement sites coordinated by IOM and UNHCR.