UNITED NATIONS, March 22 (Xinhua) -- The Security Council on Thursday expressed great concern over the deteriorating humanitarian situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), saying the situation has reached catastrophic levels in some parts of the country.
In a press statement, the council also expressed concern over the very high number of internally displaced persons in the country, which has more than doubled in the last year to more than 4.49 million, and the 540,000 refugees within the country, as well as the more than 714,000 refugees from the DRC in neighboring countries as a result of ongoing hostilities.
In this regard, the Security Council emphasized the need to address the presence of armed groups in the country and reiterated its call for transparent, credible, and inclusive elections, which are crucial for lasting peace and security in the DRC.
It expressed concern at increased impediments to humanitarian access in eastern DRC resulting from insecurity and violence, as well as continued attacks against humanitarian personnel and facilities.
At least 13.1 million Congolese are in need of humanitarian assistance, including more than 7.7 million severely food insecure people.
The Security Council called on UN member states and other partners to urgently scale up funding to respond to the humanitarian needs in the country.
The press statement came after a meeting of the Security Council on Monday on the humanitarian situation in the DRC.