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Clinton Presents Plan to Fight Sexual Violence in Congo

World  (tags: USA, Hillary Clinton, Congo, eastern congo, Congolese Women, gang-rape, brutality, rape, rape epidemic )

- 3505 days ago -
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton came face2face with the consequences of the brutality in eastern Congo on Tues afternoon when she met a Congolese woman who had been gang-raped while she was 8 mos pregnant...the fetus died.


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Kathleen Hilliker (293)
Wednesday August 12, 2009, 3:11 am
She announced that the American government would train doctors, supply rape victims with video cameras to document violence, send American military engineers to help build facilities and train Congolese police officers, especially female police officers, to crack down on rapists.

Rain For Change (163)
Wednesday August 12, 2009, 5:07 am
Thank you for sharing this. I had no idea. We are so "sheltered" from the world that is suffering. I am so grateful to Hillary for her bravery and conviction to make a difference. Hugs, Rain

Cynthia Davis (340)
Wednesday August 12, 2009, 5:54 am
We are sheltered from the world because all our TV and radio news want to feed us is crap. We don't get world news anymore. What we get is polical lies and intertanment BS about which one of our movie stars is acting badly today. I for one get sick of it.
TY for some real news Peace

Joycey B (750)
Wednesday August 12, 2009, 6:01 am
This is great to hear that Hillary is going to help these women. Thanks Peace.

Fiona Ogilvie (562)
Wednesday August 12, 2009, 6:40 am
Yes Americans are sheltered from the world of violence out there . We do not face the world that others face and we forget about he violence that goes on in the world in the daily hum drum of our lives.Grave acts of this kind of violence are something we do nit face thinking about every day, /thank you, Peace,

Cheree M (46)
Wednesday August 12, 2009, 7:06 am
Noted. That is Great what Hillary is doing. Thanks for sharing.

Rhonda Maness (580)
Wednesday August 12, 2009, 11:57 am
Thanks Peace

Mandi T (366)
Wednesday August 12, 2009, 3:33 pm
This is a great step to broaden knowledge. Good for her.
Tx Peace

Rosemary R (643)
Wednesday August 12, 2009, 11:45 pm
Rape and attrocities of abuses against not only women but men children of both sexes have been well documented for years be it in the Congo, Nigeria, Uganda or anywhere in any African nation where rebels rule at will.

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Rape destroying Congo’s communities, says Caritas psychologist
Even children aren’t safe from the widespread sexual violence in east Congo’s conflict. (Photos do not imply that the children depicted are the victims of sexual violence)

Credits: Caritas/Peter Risholm
Some of the rape victims who are brought to Caritas Congo are as old as 70. One of the youngest to require help was just three months old.

“Some of the women who come to us are so badly damaged by the rape that they can no longer walk,” says Ange Mbala, a psychologist for Caritas Congo in Goma.

Caritas Congo has counsellors who work in communities and are able to identify women and children who have been abused. The stigma attached to a sexual attack means that women may be reluctant to come forward and seek medical help.

Type the words “Congo” and “rape” into a internet news search engine, and the number of stories seem endless. This week one report said that a three-year-old girl in eastern Congo died from horrific injuries after being raped by a rebel. Reports describe rape being used “as a weapon of war”.

“It’s about destroying communities,” says Ms Mbala. “It’s not just the victims’ lives that are torn apart, but also those of their families and of the communities around them.”

Both soldiers and rebels have been accused of raping the women and children in eastern Congo’s conflict. Apart from the physical and psychological damage that rape brings, there is also a grave risk of unwanted pregnancy and HIV infection

“Women from certain communities are targeted, just to humiliate those communities, to destroy them and to occupy their land,” says Fr Pierre Cibambo, Caritas Internationalis’ Africa advocacy coordinator. “Through this strategy, the rebels are controlling and exploiting mineral resources in vast zones of the Kivu. Some soldiers are also responsible for rape and sexual violence. I think that this has something to do with the chaotic integration of former militias in the regular army.”

Ms Mbala says that the number of victims usually increases when there are more clashes between the army and rebels. Even though there appears to be relative calm in eastern Congo at the moment following months and months of violence, she says that the number of rape victims is still on the rise.

“Women may try and take care of themselves in their villages,” says Ms Mbala, “but there often isn’t a healthcare system or any professionals to treat them.”

Once the victims of sexual violence have been found, Caritas takes them for hospital treatment. Caritas trains aid workers in awareness raising about sexual violence and AIDS and informs them about laws protecting against rape. It also offers training to doctors in how to treat rape victims on a physical and psychological level.

Caritas works to help women reintegrate after the violence. It provides training in things such as sewing so they can have a marketable skill. Caritas provides material support in the form of food, clothes, hygiene items to women who become pregnant as a result of a rape.

“Through their programmes, Caritas and the Church continue to promote dialogue, peace and reconciliation in communities,” says Fr Cibambo. “Caritas is engaged in demobilisation and reinsertion programmes, especially for child soldiers. We also raise awareness among communities and young people in particular about promoting peace.”

Rocio C (38)
Thursday August 13, 2009, 10:15 am
Great news Peace. Thank you so much. Noted with pleasure :-) Hugs.

. (0)
Thursday August 13, 2009, 11:16 am
Thannx... it is a real world, and for the women of these regions a real night mare... I sincerelyhope that there will be reforms and that these men will be punished, and that respect and morals would be implemented.. Tis so sad and must be heart breaking... what a desparate situation for these girls toooo...

Elm Morrison (357)
Thursday August 13, 2009, 12:02 pm
Yes Rosemary, the raping of women and children in the Congo is open knowledge in Africa - a horror beyond horror. I am surprised the USA citizens don't know about it. It has been featured here at Care2 in the past.

Friday August 14, 2009, 11:53 am
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