Kenya on Tuesday sent four plane loads containing 34 tonnes of humanitarian and food aid to DR Congo, following the volcanic eruption of Mt Nyiragoro, which left thousands of families displaced.
“The humanitarian assistance and food aid delivered by the Kenya Defence Force is an expression of Kenya’s solidarity and friendship with the government of DRC and will go a long way to support the affected families as well as reinforce state intervention for humanitarian aid,” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Tuesday.
The tragedy left at least 15 people dead and more than 500 homes destroyed.
According to Unicef, about 5,000 people fled from the city of Goma across the nearby border into Rwanda, while another 25,000 others sought refuge to the northwest in Sake.
President Uhuru Kenyatta was on April 20 in the DR Congo for a three-day state visit in which the two countries signed various agreements to accelerate cooperation. The deals were centred on transport, security and trade.
Kenya announced plans to expand its diplomatic footprint in the brotherly nation by setting up consulates in Goma and Lubumbashi.
Why is Kenya donating to DRC?
Kenya’s move is part of what is now called humanitarian diplomacy or humanitarianism.
This is where state and non-state actors act in the interests of vulnerable people, and with full respect for fundamental humanitarian principles.
In May, Kenya also donated 12 tonnes of food products to India as part of its Covid-19 relief efforts, which comprised of tea, coffee and groundnuts.