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Fighting Sexual Violence in Congo’s Refugee Camps

June 14, 2011

A distinguishing feature of the decades long conflict over resources in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is gender-based violence. Rape as a weapon of war is so widespread that United Nations special representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict Areas, Margot Wallstrom, called the DRC the “rape capital of the world.”

Few attackers are held to account for their crimes. Christine Goyer, the U.N. Refugee Agency’s representative in the DRC, recently spoke to Women, War & Peace about efforts to reduce sexual assault in the camps, where more than 1 million displaced women and their families live.

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