News / Africa

Congolese Colonel Surrenders Over Mass Rape Accusations

Fifty-year-old Mawazo says she will never return to her village in the countryside of the Democratic Republic of Congo because she says rebel soldiers control much of the area and if they rape her again, she may be killed, May 2011
Fifty-year-old Mawazo says she will never return to her village in the countryside of the Democratic Republic of Congo because she says rebel soldiers control much of the area and if they rape her again, she may be killed, May 2011
TEXT SIZE - +

A Congolese colonel accused of leading his troops on a multi-day rampage and mass rape has turned himself in.

A military spokesman for the Democratic Republic of Congo said Friday that the colonel, known as Kifaru, surrendered Thursday with about 100 of his men.

Some DRC officials accused Colonel Kifaru and his men of pillaging Nakiele, in South Kivu province, this past June after deserting the army.  United Nations investigators say they have confirmed at least 121 cases of rape during the three-day incident.

The United States has said it is "gravely disturbed" by the attacks.  State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said the U.S. is working to provide support to the survivors and to help track down, arrest and prosecute those responsible.

United Nations officials have previously called Congo "the rape capital of the world."  They say an atmosphere of impunity allows soldiers, rebel fighters, and civilians to rape women and children without fear of arrest.

Earlier this week, the U.N. said an investigation into mass rapes last year in the Democratic Republic of Congo had been called off after some of the victims were attacked.

At least 387 women, men, and children were raped in several villages in eastern Congo's North Kivu province in late July and early August of last year.

The U.N. accuses former Congolese government troops, Congolese Mai-Mai militia and Rwandan Hutu rebels of carrying out the attacks.  So far, only one person has been charged with any crimes.

The U.N. peacekeeping force in Congo has been criticized for not preventing the rapes in July and August.

There are currently 20,000 U.N. peacekeepers in Congo.

In May, Congo asked the United Nations to withdraw its peacekeepers and allow the country to take over its own security, saying the country has made significant progress in reducing threats to the safety of citizens.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.

You May Like

Photogallery Pope's Easter Prayer: Peace in Ukraine, Syria

Pontiff also calls for end to terrorist acts in Nigeria, violence in Iraq, and success in peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians More

Abdullah Holds Lead in Afghan Presidential Election

Country's Election Commission says that with half of the ballots counted, former FM remains in the lead with 44 percent of the vote More

Russia-Ukraine Crisis Could Trigger Cyber War

As tensions between Kyiv and Moscow escalate, so too has frequency of online attacks targeting government, news and financial sites More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politicsi
X
Michael Eckels
April 19, 2014
There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politics

There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid