Saturday, February 11, 2012

#Congo - Rape In A Lawless Land

December 2008

In the villages of Eastern Congo, beyond the reach of the UN or aid agencies, lies a horrifying truth. Marauding Hutu and Tutsi militias are raping females, from one-year-old babies to ninety-year-old women.

Leah Chishugi is a nurse and survivor of the Rwandan Genocide. Returning to her homeland of Congo for her mothers funeral, Leah records the testimonies of over 400 females who have been abused. Ive got three children born out of rape, including the one in my arms, tells one young woman. In these villages there are hardly any men left. Most have been killed. The remaining women and children group together for support. The majority of them have been raped and with both the Tutsi rebels and Hutu Interahamwe attacking them, there is no hope of safety. They forced my son to have sex with me and when hed finished they killed him, describes one woman calmly. Then they raped me in front of my husband, and then they killed him too. The woman finally breaks down crying. Leah finds a 90-year-old woman who has been raped by five men. The sixth one came and said he couldnt do it, so he just put the gun in her womb instead. When Leah takes the woman to hospital, she realises just how little help there is anywhere. There is no medicine in the hospital and a severe shortage of beds. Im not getting any treatment, says one patient, the pain is going straight into my heart.