Virunga ranger station becomes sanctuary in war torn Congo

The Virunga National Park wildlife ranger station in Rumangabo has become a sanctuary for the innocent villagers caught up in the ongoing violence in in the region. Yesterday, following heavy fighting in the immediate area, queues of injured formed at the small medical clinic in the station. [pullquote]staff, most of them untrained for medical emergencies, will be working through the night doing what they can to help.[/pullquote]

Despite heavy shelling a fighting the rangers provided essential treatment to a number of people including making a dangerous evacuation flight of a severely injured school teacher in their small plane.     The fighting means that the light aircraft is the only way into and out of the area.

Reporting on his regular blog, Chief Warden  Emmanual De Merode, said that a baby girl had died from mortar shelling and other injured people included an old man in a coma with shell fragments lodged in his brain.

Fortunately none of the rangers have been seriously injured and the “…staff, most of them untrained for medical emergencies, will be working through the night doing what they can to help.

The station at Rumangabo is currently manned by a small team of wildlife rangers.  Their families and non-essential staff had been evacuated to a basic camp earlier this month as violence started to build up.

External sites:

Virunga Wildlife Rangers Blog.