United Nations Peacekeeping Force Threatens to Stop Supporting Congolese Army Battalions Accused of Rape

by Colonel on March 8, 2013

“The U.N. peacekeeping mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo has threatened to stop supporting two Congolese army battalions unless soldiers accused of raping scores of women in an eastern town are prosecuted, a senior U.N. official said on Thursday.

The United Nations said 126 women were raped in Minova in November after Congolese troops fled to the town as so-called M23 rebels briefly captured the nearby provincial capital of Goma.

The senior U.N. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the two Congolese battalions had been told to start prosecuting soldiers accused of raping the women in Minova this month or they would lose the support of U.N. peacekeepers.

The U.N. peacekeeping mission in Congo, known as MONUSCO, has a mandate to protect civilians and supports operations by the Congolese army. There are more than 17,000 troops in Congo.

” — Michelle Nichols, Copyright 2013 Thomson Reuters

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