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Women march, demand end to mass rapes in E. Congo

Women march, demand end to mass rapes in E. Congo

Published October 18, 2010

KINSHASA, Congo – Thousands of women led by Congo's first lady are marching in the country's volatile east to demand an end to a wave of mass rapes.

First lady Olive Lembe Kabila led the women through the town of Bukavu on Sunday. The United Nations recently reported that 303 civilians were raped in 13 nearby villages from July 30-Aug. 2.

Congo's top U.N. envoy also said more than 15,000 people were raped in eastern Congo last year. But he said it's impossible for 18,000 U.N. peacekeepers to protect everyone in the massive area where armed groups operate. Another UN official said most attacks were committed by "men in uniform."

Congo's defense minister denied soldiers were involved. But the justice minister said courts have prosecuted several officers, including a general.

Written by Associated Press


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