Congo-Kinshasa: Violence Against Women and Girls in DRC
Brutal crimes of violence against women and girls have massively increased and become pervasive in the country. Thousands of women and young girls have suffered due to beating, rape and forced sexual slavery.
This article is by Dr. Theodore Menelik-Mfuni and it originally appeared on www.allafrica.com.
Brutal crimes of violence against women and girls have massively increased and become pervasive in the country. Thousands of women and young girls have suffered due to beating, rape and forced sexual slavery. Just the other month (March 2013) a man killed his pregnant wife because she lost his phone sim card. Girls as young as six years old suffer sexual violence committed by various groups but mostly by those who have power who use it to silence people including those who are supposed to protect them.
The situation of increasing violence against women and young girls is as bad in Kinshasa as it is in rural areas. In the East, in addition to being exploited by people within their own community, when militia from neighbouring countries come across the border, sexual atrocities are often committed that are of an unimaginable brutality. These go beyond rape and aim at the complete physical and psychological destruction of women as sexual slaves with implications for the entire society. Women are brutally gang raped, often in front of their families and communities. In numerous cases, male relatives are forced at gunpoint to rape their own daughters, mothers or sisters. Such women often end up being infected by HIV and stigmatised by their families and, if married, they are often deserted by their husbands. To continue reading click here.