United Nations Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict Margot Wallstroem arrived in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) Tuesday to investigate the mass rape of civilians that occurred there in June and July of this year. The UN News Center reports the objective is to coordinate an appropriate response to the mass rape by rebels of more than 300 people, mostly women, in the country's North Kivu province.
The United Nations first condemned the use of mass rape as a weapon of war in August. At that time, Wallstroem told reporters that using rape as a tool of war is no more acceptable nor inevitable than committing mass murder. Rebels allegedly entered the town of Ruvungi on July 30 and proceeded to pillage the town and systematically rape its occupants for several days, blocking a road that connects the town to UN peacekeeping troops.
"The FDLR is once again responsible for grave human rights violations in the DRC," Ms. Wallstroem said Monday in Geneva at a UN Human Rights Council meeting. "The establishment of responsibilities must begin with the leaders of this group and with those of other groups for not having prevented these outrages."
While in the DRC, Ms. Wallstroem intends to meet with UN agencies and Congolese officials to speed up the enactment of an effective strategy against sexual violence.
Media Resources: UN News Center 9/28/10; Feminist Daily Newswire 8/24/10
11/25/2015 Afghan Women Launch 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence - Afghanistan marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and begun participating in the worldwide 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, which is being called in Afghanistan "Peace from Home to the World." During the launch day's event, which was attended by government officials, including First Lady Rula Ghani and women's rights activists, speakers expressed their commitment to ending violence against women.
First Lady, Rula Ghani gave a speech on ending violence against women and supporting women by stating that "war often leads society towards violence and this violence is in violation of human dignity. . . .