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Friday, October 21, 2016
Liberia: thousands still wait for aid
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¬†Thousands of people in Buchanan, a port 70km from Monrovia, have still not received aid, the Consolata missionary sisters told the Missionary News Service on Tuesday. The sisters who live in Harbel, 50 kms from the capital said their community of two nuns in Buchanan was caring for more than 7,000 people, but had only received a few medicines and high protein biscuits. The sisters have been isolated for almost two months and can only be contacted by radio. Sister Maria Inocencia from Brazil told MISNA the refugees were afraid to return home because the area was so dangerous. Although the rebels had promised to lay down their arms she said they continued to carry out raids, especially at night." Last Saturday, the ECOMIL contingent ≠ the West African peacekeeping troops in Liberia - entered Buchanan for the first time. Sr Maria said: "Their presence is fundamental for guaranteeing security. The main problem concerns the risk of attacks by armed gangs on the road linking the city to Monrovia. Recently I made the journey to Buchanan with a Caritas Internationalis mission and I saw with my own eyes just how dangerous this road is. Government troops are present as far as Furmington River, about half way along, after which you pass into the area under MODEL control." The missionary says Buchanan is practically "a ghost town". She said: "While before it looked like a vast slum, today it seems completely destroyed: people are afraid to return home and are crowding schools, the few public buildings and our mission."
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