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European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations
News article4 March 2023Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO)1 min read

EU mobilises over €47 million and launches Humanitarian Air Bridge to help people affected by the conflict in DRC

© European Union

The humanitarian situation in the east of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is drastically deteriorating due to a significant further escalation of the conflict in North Kivu. The humanitarian community is facing a worsening situation and is increasingly overwhelmed by the needs of thousands of displaced people.

For this reason, the EU is promptly setting up a Humanitarian Air Bridge flight to Goma. The operation, conducted with the support of France as a Team Europe initiative, will deliver humanitarian support in the form of medical and nutritional supplies along with a range of other emergency items, in collaboration with UNICEF and other humanitarian partners.

The EU is also releasing over €47 million to be channelled through humanitarian partners to cover immediate needs such as nutrition, healthcare, water and sanitation, shelter and protection.

Commissioner for Crisis Management, Janez Lenarčič, said: “The EU stands ready to mobilise all the necessary means to support humanitarian workers, including logistics and air, to meet the needs of the population in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. With this EU Humanitarian Air Bridge operation organised with the support of France and the new fund mobilisation, we reaffirm our support to the most vulnerable”.


The deteriorating humanitarian situation in Eastern DRC accounts for more than 600,000 people displaced by the M23 incursion, with some 240,000 living on the outskirts of Goma in makeshift sites.

Displaced people's living conditions are extremely harsh, with lack of shelter and household products, water and sanitation, food and poor health conditions. Less than 50% of the needs are covered.

Overall 27 million people are severely food insecure in the DRC, notably because of the upsurge of violence, conflict and instability eastern DRC and large internal displacement.

In 2022, the EU allocated around €82 million in humanitarian funding to address the needs of the most vulnerable people in the DRC and the Great Lakes region.

In 2021, we also provided more than €70 million to support emergency humanitarian actions in the DRC. This amount came on top of bilateral humanitarian support by individual EU countries.

Most of the EU-funded humanitarian projects are helping vulnerable people in the east of the country affected by persistent conflict. The aid focuses on food assistance and nutrition, shelter, protection, emergency healthcare, including care for survivors of sexual violence, water, sanitation and education in emergencies.