❤❤❤ Cultural Violence In The Congo

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Cultural Violence In The Congo

Airport Fees: All departing international Cultural Violence In The Congo must pay these official fees when checking in:. Cultural Violence In The Congo were numerous reports the government or its agents committed Cultural Violence In The Congo or unlawful killings. Financial Disclosure: The law requires the president and ministers to disclose their assets to a government committee. Union committees are required to Cultural Violence In The Congo company management Cultural Violence In The Congo a planned strike, but they Cultural Violence In The Congo not need authorization to strike. Cultural Violence In The Congo 3 March Trokosi in Ghana, Togo and Benin is a traditional system where virgins, Cultural Violence In The Congo as young as six years, are sent Cultural Violence In The Congo Troxovi shrines for gods as slaves, to make amends for wrongs committed by Cultural Violence In The Congo member of the virgin girl's family. Cultural Violence In The Congo this whole time, the rainy season may pass before I sow any seeds - Cultural Violence In The Congo big 1.1 explain the difference between equality diversity and inclusion for me," she says. There is Cultural Violence In The Congo legal framework for foreigners or same-sex couples to pursue surrogacy in DRC. Prison Cultural Violence In The Congo often held South American Imperialism longer than their sentences due to disorganization, inadequate records, Simulated Prison Experiment inefficiency, or corruption.

THE WAR IN CONGO (Full Documentary)

In the United Kingdom, the campaign was led by the activist and pamphleteer E. Morel after , whose book Red Rubber reached a mass audience. A few days later the British consul in the town of Boma , Roger Casement, began touring the Congo to investigate the true extent of the abuses. He delivered his report in December, and a revised version was forwarded to the Free State authorities in February In an attempt to preserve the Congo's labour force and stifle British criticism, Leopold promoted attempts to combat disease to give the impression that he cared about the welfare of the Congolese and invited experts from the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine to assist.

This would avoid damaging the delicate balance of power between France and Britain on the continent. While supporters of the Free State regime attempted to argue against claims of atrocities, a Commission of Enquiry, appointed by the regime in , confirmed the stories of atrocities and pressure on the Belgian government increased. In , as a direct result of this campaign, Belgium formally annexed the territory, creating the Belgian Congo. For some time after the end of the Free State the Congolese were also required to provide a certain number of days of service per year for infrastructure projects.

It was indeed a holocaust before Hitler's Holocaust. What happened in the heart of Africa was genocidal in scope long before that now familiar term, genocide, was ever coined. Historian Robert Weisbord [90]. The significant number of deaths under the Free State regime has led some scholars to relate the atrocities to later genocides , though understanding of the losses under the colonial administration's rule as the result of harsh economic exploitation rather than a policy of deliberate extermination has led others to dispute the comparison; [91] there is an open debate as to whether the atrocities constitute genocide. Historian Adam Hochschild [96]. It is generally agreed by historians that extermination was never the policy of the Free State.

According to historian David Van Reybrouck , "It would be absurd But it was definitely a hecatomb , a slaughter on a staggering scale that was not intentional, but could have been recognised much earlier as the collateral damage of a perfidious, rapacious policy of exploitation". He was greedy for money and chose not to interest himself when things got out of control. Historians have argued that comparisons drawn in the press by some between the death toll of the Free State atrocities and the Holocaust during World War II have been responsible for creating undue confusion over the issue of terminology. Hochschild himself criticised the title as "misleading" and stated that it had been chosen "without my knowledge".

Similar criticism was echoed by historian Jean-Luc Vellut. Allegations of genocide in the Free State have become common over time. Stapleton , "Those who easily apply the term genocide to Leopold's regime seem to do so purely on the basis of its obvious horror and the massive numbers of people who may have perished. It was supported by 48 MPs. In Hochschild published King Leopold's Ghost , a book detailing the atrocities committed during the Free State existence. The book became a bestseller in Belgium, but aroused criticism from former Belgian colonialists and some academics as exaggerating the extent of the atrocities and population decline.

Historian Idesbald Goddeeris criticised these works—including Van Reybrouk's Congo: A History —for taking a softened stance on the atrocities committed in the Congolese Free State, saying "They acknowledge the dark period of the Congo Free State, but The term "Congolese genocide" is often used in an unrelated sense to refer to the mass murder and rape committed in the eastern Congo in the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide and the ensuing Second Congo War between and The legacy of the population decline of Leopold's reign left the subsequent colonial government with a severe labour shortage and it often had to resort to mass migrations to provide workers to emerging businesses.

The atrocities of the era generated public debate about Leopold, his specific role in them, and his legacy. Belgian crowds booed at his funeral in to express their dissatisfaction with his rule of the Congo. Attention to the atrocities subsided in the following years and statues of him were erected in the s at the initiative of Albert I , while the Belgian government celebrated his accomplishments in Belgium. Some activists accused him of not making a full apology. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. King Leopold II , whose personal rule of the Congo Free State was marked by severe atrocities, violence and major population decline. Further information: Congo Free State propaganda war. Democratic Republic of the Congo portal. London: P.

Retrieved 26 September Civilisation in Congoland. ISBN The Guardian. Retrieved 20 October Mariner Books. London: William Heinnemann, p. Encyclopedia of Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity. Detroit, Michigan : Macmillan. Madison, Wisconsin: University of Wisconsin Press. Belgium and the Congo, — New York: Cambridge University Press. Morel's History of the Congo Reform Movement. Oxford: Clarendon, pp. South African Historical Journal. S2CID The Independent. Retrieved 10 July Retrieved 19 June Retrieved 7 June New Statesman.

Retrieved 16 June BBC News. The Brussels Times. Retrieved 10 June Retrieved 1 July The New Yorker. Anstey, Roger African Historical Studies. JSTOR Ascherson, Neal London: Granta. World Without Genocide. Retrieved 29 July Drumond, Paula In Adam Jones ed. New Directions in Genocide Research. Houses of Parliament. Retrieved 29 December Ewans, Martin Gibbs, David N. Policy in the Congo Crisis. American Politics and Political Economy. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Goddeeris, Idesbald International Journal of Postcolonial Studies. Crimes of sexual violence were sometimes committed as a tactic of war to punish civilians for having perceived allegiances to rival parties or groups. The crimes occurred throughout the country but principally in the conflict zones in North and South Kivu Provinces.

The government disputed these numbers. IAGs also perpetrated numerous incidents of physical abuse and sexual violence. UN data showed that the FDLR, along with Twa militias and Djugu-based assailants, were the most prolific perpetrators of conflict-related sexual violence. Twa militia members tended to target women working on farms or on their way to or from farming. For example, in April, Twa militiamen raped 16 women on their farms in Tanganyika Province before forcing them into the forest for the night and releasing them the next morning. At least 30 children were victims of sexual violence perpetrated by NDC-R.

On February 14, a military court in Bunia, Ituri Province, convicted three members of the Patriotic Resistance Forces of Ituri of war crimes for rape, looting, and participation in an insurrectional movement. The three were sentenced to 20 years in prison. In an effort to combat impunity for the violence in Ituri Province, the military court held the hearings in public. On November 23, a military court convicted Nduma Defense of Congo NDC founder Ntabo Ntaberi Sheka for war crimes, mass rape, recruitment of child soldiers, murder, and multiple other crimes. While NGO representatives commended the high quality of evidence presented at the trial, they also raised concerns regarding its slow pace, witness intimidation, and the lack of appeals process under the law for war crimes trials.

According to the United Nations, at least children were separated from IAGs during the first six months of the year. NDC-R also recruited and used children. As of June 30, two years into the outreach, a total of 34 armed group commanders had pledged not to use or recruit children. On August 27, Radio Okapi reported the decree was already being implemented. Clandestine trade in minerals and other natural resources facilitated the purchase of weapons and reduced government revenues. The natural resources most exploited were gold, cassiterite tin ore , coltan tantalum ore , and wolframite tungsten ore but also included wildlife products, timber, charcoal, and fish.

The law provides for freedom of speech, including for the press, but the government did not always respect this right. The press frequently and openly criticized public officials and public policy decisions. Individuals generally could criticize the government, its officials, and other citizens in private without being subject to official reprisals. Public criticism, however, of government officials and corruption sometimes resulted in intimidation, threats, or arrest. Provincial-level governments also prevented journalists from filming or covering some protests. An HRW report in July stated that provincial-level officials were using the national state of emergency related to COVID to restrict press freedoms and detain journalists and activists who criticized them or their policies.

Freedom of Speech: The law prohibits insulting the head of state, malicious and public slander, and language presumed to threaten national security. Authorities sometimes intimidated, harassed, and detained journalists, activists, and politicians when they publicly criticized the government, president, or SSF. By June 8, all four had been released. According to Reporters without Borders, on June 17, provincial authorities revoked reporting credentials from Ngani and five other journalists. Freedom of Press and Media , Including Online Media: The law mandates the High Council for the Audiovisual and Communications to provide for freedom of the press and equal access to communications media and information for political parties, associations, and citizens.

A large and active private press functioned in Kinshasa and in other major cities, and the government licensed a large number of daily newspapers. Radio remained the principal medium of public information due to limited literacy and the relatively high cost of newspapers and television. Government officials, politicians, and to a lesser extent church leaders, owned or operated the majority of media outlets. The government required newspapers to pay a one-time license fee and complete several administrative requirements before publishing. Broadcast media were subject to a Directorate for Administrative and Land Revenue advertisement tax. Many journalists lacked professional training, received little or no set salary, could not access government information, and exercised self-censorship due to concerns of harassment, intimidation, or arrest.

Another 48 were attributed to provincial and local political authorities. JED reported one journalist killed, one disappeared, nine incarcerated, and 31 detained for more than the legal limit of 48 hours without being charged. The two were accused of insulting Provincial Governor Jean Maweja Muteba and were subsequently assaulted. Ange stated the officers confiscated her press badge and equipment. Authorities confiscated his recordings, which contained witness testimony alleging that guards of Governor Atou Matubouana killed the woman. On July 14, Palata was released without charge. Censorship or Content Restrictions: While the High Council for Audiovisual and Communications is the only institution with legal authority to restrict broadcasts, the government, including the SSF and provincial officials, also exercised this power.

Media representatives reported they were pressured by provincial government authorities not to cover events organized by the opposition or report news concerning opposition leaders. The national and provincial governments used defamation laws to intimidate and punish critics. National Security: The national government used a law that prohibits anyone from making general defamatory accusations against the military to restrict free speech. Nongovernmental Impact: IAGs and their political wings regularly restricted press freedom in the areas where they operated.

The government did not restrict or disrupt access to the internet or censor online content, and there were some reports that the government monitored private online communications without appropriate legal authority. The constitution provides for freedom of peaceful assembly, but government authorities restricted this right and prevented those critical of the government from exercising their right to peaceful assembly, especially in Upper Uele, North Kivu, and Tanganyika Provinces.

The law requires organizers of public events to notify local authorities in advance of the event. The government sometimes used this advance notification requirement to decline to authorize public meetings or protests organized by opposition parties or civil society groups critical of the government. During the COVIDrelated state of emergency, which lasted from March 24 through August 15, public gatherings of more than 20 persons were banned. The SSF beat, detained, or arrested persons participating in protests, marches, and meetings.

The SSF also used tear gas, rubber bullets, and at times live ammunition, resulting in numerous civilian deaths and injuries. Local media reported that on January 17, meetings called by opposition leader Martin Fayulu were banned in six cities. Protesters in Kinshasa and Kindu were violently dispersed. Police also beat some of them. During the scuffle three persons were killed, two were electrocuted by downed power lines, and one was crushed by the stampeding crowd.

MONUSCO reported that the majority of human rights abuses during the state of emergency came from individual SSF agents taking advantage of the situation to mistreat, arbitrarily arrest, or extort victims. The two women were forced to give police a bribe in order to be released. The UNJHRO reported more restrictions on democratic space and human rights violations related to fundamental freedoms, compared with the same period in In the first six months of the year, the office documented violations of democratic space, compared with violations recorded during the same period in These included restrictions on freedom of assembly, the right to liberty and security of person, and of the right to freedom of opinion and expression.

The constitution provides for freedom of association, and the government generally respected this right. Civil society organizations and NGOs are required to register with the government and may receive funds only through donations; they may not generate any revenue, even if it is not at a profit. The registration process was burdensome and very slow. Some groups, particularly within the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex LGBTI community, reported the government had denied their registration requests. Many NGOs reported that, even when carefully following the registration process, it often took years to receive certification. Many interpreted registration difficulties as intentional government obstacles for impeding NGO activity.

The law provides for freedom of internal movement, foreign travel, emigration, and repatriation. The government sometimes restricted these rights. The SSF routinely harassed and extorted money from civilians for supposed violations, sometimes detaining them until they or a relative paid. The government required travelers to submit to control procedures at airports and ports during domestic travel and when entering and leaving towns.

IAGs engaged in similar activity in areas under their control, routinely extorting civilians at checkpoints and holding them for ransom. Local authorities continued to collect illegal taxes and fees for boats to travel on many parts of the Congo River. There also were widespread reports FARDC soldiers and IAG combatants extorted fees from persons taking goods to market or traveling between towns see section 1.

The SSF sometimes required travelers to present travel orders from an employer or government official, although the law does not require such documentation. The SSF often detained and sometimes exacted bribes from individuals traveling without orders. Foreign Travel: Because of inadequate administrative systems, passport issuance was irregular. Officials accepted bribes to expedite passport issuance, and there were reports the price of fully biometric passports varied widely. The government was unable to consistently protect or assist IDPs adequately but generally allowed domestic and international humanitarian organizations to do so. The government sometimes closed IDP camps without coordinating with the international humanitarian community.

Conflict, insecurity, and poor infrastructure adversely affected humanitarian efforts to assist IDPs. Due to lack of funding, the humanitarian response plan for the country targeted only half of the persons in need in Ituri Province. Population displacements continued, particularly in the east. Intercommunal violence and fighting among armed groups in the east resulted in continued population displacement and increased humanitarian needs for IDPs and host communities. Due to the remote location, weak civilian authority, and insecurity of the Kasai region, humanitarian access was difficult, and IDPs lived in poor conditions without adequate shelter or protection.

Women and girls were particularly vulnerable to sexual violence, including gang rape. Seventy percent of returnees lingered along the DRC-Angola border, waiting to return to Angola if and when the situation there improved. Combatants and other civilians abused IDPs. Abuses included killings, sexual exploitation of women and children including rape , abduction, forced conscription, looting, illegal taxation, and general harassment.

The government occasionally cooperated with UNHCR and other humanitarian organizations in providing protection and assistance to IDPs, refugees, returning refugees, asylum seekers, stateless persons, or other persons of concern. As of June 30, UNHCR reported , refugees in the country, primarily from seven adjacent countries, of whom approximately , were from Rwanda. Of the refugees in the country, 63 percent were children. Incursions by South Sudanese forces into areas of northern DRC affected security for asylum seekers, refugees and Congolese returnees, as well as local populations.

Access to Asylum: The law provides for the granting of asylum or refugee status, and the government established a rudimentary system for providing protection to refugees. The system granted refugee and asylum status and provided protection against the expulsion or return of refugees to countries where their lives or freedom would be threatened on account of their race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion. As of June 30, there were 2, asylum seekers in the country.

The government cooperated with UNHCR and other humanitarian organizations in assisting refugees and asylum seekers with welfare and safety needs. The government assisted in the safe, voluntary return of refugees to their homes by allowing their entry into the country and facilitating immigration processing. In establishing security mechanisms, government authorities did not treat refugees differently than citizens. Durable Solutions: As of September, more than 1, refugees returned to the Central African Republic from the northern part of the country. COVID restrictions prevented other voluntary returns.

The country did not invoke the cessation clause effective in for Rwandan refugees who fled Rwanda before the end of In the government joined other refugee-hosting countries and UNHCR to commit to facilitating repatriation of Rwandans from countries of asylum. To implement the tripartite agreement from , the National Commission on Refugees and UNHCR began in the process of biometrically registering Rwandan refugees who opted to remain in the country. Refugees received long-term, renewable permits to remain in the country.

The program included a path to citizenship. Conflict impeded the process in North Kivu, where most of the refugees were located. The population included former combatants and their family members. UNHCR was unable to meet with the refugee population prior to the event to ascertain whether their return to Rwanda was voluntary. Temporary Protection: The government provided temporary protection to an undetermined number of individuals who may not qualify as refugees see section 1. The country has a population of de facto stateless residents and persons at risk of statelessness, including persons of Sudanese origin living in the northeast, Mbororo pastoralists in the far north, forced returnees from Angola and former Angolan refugees, mixed-race persons who are denied naturalization, and Congolese citizens without civil documentation.

The law does not discriminate in granting citizenship on the grounds of gender, religion, or disability; however, the naturalization process is cumbersome and requires parliamentary approval of individual citizenship applications. Persons whose names are not spelled according to local custom were often denied citizenship, as were individuals with lighter colored skin. Persons without national identification cards were sometimes arbitrarily arrested by the SSF. The constitution provides citizens the ability to choose their government in free and fair periodic elections held by secret ballot and based on universal and equal suffrage.

Recent Elections: Presidential, legislative, and provincial elections were held in December and drew criticism grounded in procedural transparency concerns. Although the CENI organized legislative and provincial contests in those areas in March , more than one million voters were disenfranchised from the presidential contest. Some persons questioned the final election results due to press reports of unverified data leaked from unnamed sources indicating opposition candidate Martin Fayulu received the most votes. The election aftermath was calm, with most citizens accepting the outcome. Senatorial elections were held in March through an indirect vote by provincial assemblies. Government authorities and the SSF, however, prevented opposition parties from holding public meetings, assemblies, and peaceful protests.

The SSF used force to prevent or disrupt opposition-organized events. State-run media, including television and radio stations, remained the largest sources of information for the public and government see section 2. There were reports of government intimidation of political opponents, such as denying opposition groups the right to assemble peacefully see section 2. In a number of districts, known as chefferies , traditional chiefs perform the role of a local government administrator. Unelected, they are selected based on local tribal customs generally based on family inheritance and if approved are paid by the government. Participation of Women and Members of Minorit y Groups: No laws limit participation of women or members of minority groups in the political process, and they did participate, although some ethnic groups in the restive east claimed discrimination.

Women held 10 percent of seats in the National Assembly 52 of and 10 percent in the provincial assemblies 72 of In April Jeanine Mabunda was named president of the National Assembly, the second time a woman has held that position. Of senators, 23 were women. Among the 66 government vice prime ministers, ministers, ministers of state, vice ministers, and minister delegates, 12 were women, an increase in the total number from that of the previous government from 10 percent of 59 such positions to 17 percent of 65 such positions. Some observers believed cultural and traditional factors prevented women from participating in political life to the same extent as men.

Some groups, including indigenous persons, claimed they had no representation in the Senate, National Assembly, or provincial assemblies. Discrimination against indigenous groups continued in some areas, such as Equateur, East Kasai, and Upper Katanga Provinces, and contributed to their lack of political participation see section 6. The national electoral law prohibits certain groups of citizens from voting in elections, in particular members of the armed forces and the national police. The law provides criminal penalties for corruption by officials, but the government did not implement the law effectively, and officials frequently engaged in corrupt practices with impunity.

Local NGOs blamed these levels of corruption, in part, to the lack of a law providing for access to public information. A special service under the Office of the President, the APLC is responsible for coordinating all government entities charged with fighting corruption and money laundering, conducting investigations with the full authority of judicial police, and overseeing transfer of public corruption cases to appropriate judicial authorities. Corruption: Corruption by officials at all levels as well as within state-owned enterprises continued to deprive state coffers of hundreds of millions of dollars per year.

Both were sentenced to five years in prison. On June 20, Vital Kamerhe, the chief of staff to President Tshisekedi, was convicted by a Kinshasa court of a range of charges, including embezzlement of public funds, money laundering, and corruption. Kamerhe was sentenced to 20 years in prison, fined several million dollars, and stripped of the right to vote and hold public office for 10 years after serving his sentence. A codefendant, director of the Congolese Construction Company Modese Makabuza, was found guilty of complicity and sentenced to one year of forced labor. Office of Roads Director Herman Mutima was imprisoned for nearly six months due to corruption allegations related to the Days program. On August 22, he was acquitted by a Kinshasa court and released from jail.

Reuters reported that prosecutors were investigating possible money laundering and fraud related to the loan, and Yuma was barred from leaving the country. In a May Council of Ministers meeting, President Tshisekedi instructed the minister of portfolio to submit a detailed report on the allegations. Elements of the SSF were undisciplined and corrupt. The law prohibits the FARDC from engaging in mineral trade, but the government did not effectively enforce the law. The illegal trade in minerals was both a symptom and a cause of weak governance. It illegally financed IAGs and individual elements of the SSF and sometimes generated revenue for traditional authorities and local and provincial governments.

Individual FARDC commanders also sometimes appointed civilians with no overt military connection to manage their interests at mining sites covertly. Artisanal mining remained predominantly informal and illicit and strongly linked to both armed groups and certain elements of the FARDC. Artisanal mining products, particularly gold, were smuggled into Uganda and Rwanda, often with the connivance of government officials. The report highlighted that Ituri Province was a major source of smuggled gold found in Uganda.

As of research by IPIS estimated 44 percent of artisanal mine sites in the east were free of illegal control or taxation from either elements of the SSF or IAGs, 38 percent were under the control of elements of the FARDC, and the remainder were under the control of various armed groups. In areas affected by conflict, both IAGs and elements of the SSF regularly set up roadblocks and ran illegal taxation schemes. In IPIS published data showing state agents regularly sold tags meant to validate clean mineral supply chains. The validation tags—a mechanism designed to reduce corruption, labor abuses, trafficking in persons, and environmental destruction—were regularly sold to smugglers.

A June report from the UN Group of Experts found armed groups regularly financed their activities through illegal mining. The report documented cases of certain FARDC units involved in the illegal exploitation of gold resources. According to the report, that money was sent to the military hierarchy of the 33rd military region. These accounts facilitated graft by shielding receipts and disbursements from public scrutiny. Under the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative standard of , the government is required to disclose the allocation of revenues and expenditures from extractive companies. In June the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative board noted the country had made meaningful progress in its implementation of the standard but also expressed concern regarding persistent corruption and mismanagement of funds in the extractive sector.

In September local media reported that the financial inspector general was investigating the management of both the Bukangalonzo agroindustrial park and the Go-Pass airport tax, as part of its efforts to inform the population of extant cases of financial wrongdoing. Financial Disclosure: The law requires the president and ministers to disclose their assets to a government committee. The president and all ministers and vice ministers reportedly did so when they took office. The committee had yet to make this information public. Elements of the SSF continued to kill, harass, beat, intimidate, and arbitrarily arrest and detain domestic human rights advocates and domestic NGO workers, particularly when the NGOs reported on or supported victims of abuses by the SSF or reported on the illegal exploitation of natural resources in the east.

IAGs repeatedly targeted local human rights defenders for violent retribution when they spoke out against abuses. It also held human rights training sessions for magistrates, visited detention centers, conducted professional development workshops for human rights defense networks in the interior, and followed up on complaints of human rights abuses from civilians. The Human Rights Ministry made public statements condemning arbitrary arrests of journalists and human rights defenders and called for impartial investigations into April violence by the PNC and other state security forces in Kinshasa and Kongo Central during operations against the Bundu Dia Kongo group.

The ministry also developed a plan for eliminating the worst forms of child labor in mining communities. Both the National Commission on Human Rights and the Human Rights Ministry continued to lack sufficient funding for overhead costs and full-time representation in all 26 provinces. The United Nations or Other International Bodies: The government cooperated at times with investigations by the United Nations and other international bodies but was not consistent in doing so. For example, the government refused to grant the United Nations access to certain detention centers, particularly at military installations such as military intelligence headquarters.

In May, Tresor Mputu Kankonde, a former leader of the Kamuina Nsapu militia, and one of the suspects alleged to be responsible for the killing of Sharp and Catalan, was arrested by military police in Kasai Central Province. Rape and Domestic Violence: The law on sexual violence criminalizes rape, but the offense was not always reported by victims, and the law was not always enforced. Rape was common. The legal definition of rape does not include spousal rape or intimate partner rape. It also prohibits extrajudicial settlements for example, a customary fine paid by the perpetrator to the family of the victim and forced marriage, allows victims of sexual violence to waive appearance in court, and permits closed hearings to protect confidentiality.

The minimum penalty prescribed for conviction of rape is a prison sentence of five years, and courts regularly imposed such sentences in rape convictions. Some prosecutions occurred for rape and other types of sexual violence. From January through June, the UNJHRO reported at least women and girls were victims of sexual and gender-based violence in conflict-affected areas. IAGs frequently used rape as a weapon of war see section 1. Government agents raped and sexually abused women and girls during arrest and detention, as well as during the course of military action. While it was a problem throughout the country, the majority of cases took place in areas affected by internal conflict. The soldier and officer were sentenced to 20 years in prison each.

During the same hearing, five other FARDC soldiers were convicted of other human rights abuses and received prison sentences. Most survivors of rape did not pursue formal legal action due to insufficient resources, lack of confidence in the justice system, family pressure, and fear of subjecting themselves to humiliation, reprisal, or both. The law does not provide any specific penalty for domestic violence despite its prevalence.

Although the law considers assault a crime, police rarely intervened in perceived domestic disputes. There were no reports of judicial authorities taking action in cases of domestic or spousal abuse. Perpetrators allegedly targeted children because they believed harming children or having sex with virgins could protect against death in conflict. Sexual Harassment: Sexual harassment occurred throughout the country. The law prohibits sexual harassment and stipulates a minimum sentence of one year if convicted, but there was little or no effective enforcement of the law. Coercion in Population Control: There were no reports of coerced abortion or involuntary sterilization on the part of government authorities. Discrimination: The constitution prohibits discrimination based on gender, but the law does not provide women the same rights as men.

The law provides women a number of protections. Ever heard of Entito Maasai or egesane Kisii? Girls and women who have not undergone female genital mutilation FGM are called by these names in the open - at the river, in the market and any other social place. With that identity, they feel inadequate and lacking a sense of belonging, says Emily Konchellah, an anti-FGM campaigner in Narok County.

This pushes them to undergo the cut in order to fit in. During an intergenerational forum on harmful cultural practices in Kilgoris, Kajiado County last July, the anti-FGM advocate said: "Men, please stand up for women and girls. FGM will end if you say no to demeaning those who have not been cut. Let your communities know that you are okay with marrying women who have not undergone FGM.

The attendants highlighted FGM as an underlying contributor to high prevalence of child marriages in Kenya. Twenty one per cent of girls and women aged 49 years have been subjected to FGM according to the Kenya Demographic and Health Survey. The prevalence, however, varies from the highest 98 per cent in North-eastern Kenya to one per cent in Western. Further, the data shows 72 per cent of women living with the cut reside in three regions namely North-eastern, Rift Valley and Nyanza.

The prevalence also differs depending on the ethnicity. For instance, less than one per cent of Luhya and Luo women report being cut in contrast to 94 per cent of the Somali origin. On the other hand, the survey shows a 23 per cent prevalence in child marriage. FGM and child marriage have been illegal in Kenya since when the Children's Act became law, but women and girls continue to be victims. Other laws such as the Sexual Offences Act, , the Prohibition of Female Genital Mutilation Act, and the Marriage Act, , which sets the age of marriage at 18 years, also protect girls from these practices. With President Uhuru Kenyatta's commitment to fight gender-based violence and end FGM by , multi-sectoral approaches have been employed to end these harmful cultural practices, especially mobilising local administrators to action.

Of Mr Kenyatta's 12 anti-GBV commitments is for his government to adopt a GBV indicator in performance contracting framework as a tool of monitoring all the duty bearers on their progress in enforcing the respective legislations and guidelines. And so far, some administrators have been on the front-line in the fight against FGM and child marriage. Rift Valley Regional Coordinator, George Natembeya, has been conspicuously vocal on this front, calling on communities to end these practices.

If a girl gets pregnant in your area, I will presume that pregnancy is yours," he said last year, warning mothers against subjecting their daughters to FGM before marrying them off. In Samburu County, under-age girls, are bound through beading. Here, a moran uses beads to buy a girl yet to undergo FGM for the purpose of having sexual relations with her. Should she get pregnant, she is forced to undergo a traditional abortion. And the man is not in any way obliged to marry her. In Nyanza and Western regions widow cleansing and inheritance as well as woman-to-woman marriages are common. Widows are cleansed and inherited by relatives predisposing them to abuse and HIV infection.

Now, relatives are slowly moving away from the tradition and instead loaning the widows to friends who cleanse them for a pay. On the other hand, fathers take advantage of the woman-to-woman marriages to dispose of their daughters who have given birth out-of-wedlock or force their teenagers out of school to sell them off to the women-often elderly barren women. The married women are merely "baby producers". They sleep with sexual partners of their choice, get pregnant and walk away. The 'husband' is supposed to support her to raise the children but due to their frailty, the 'wife' takes absolute responsibility for the children.

Gender Chief Administrative Secretary Dr Linah Jebii Kilimo says the government is working towards uprooting these harmful practices through national and county gender sector working groups. She cites the "fear of unknown" as an obstacle to eliminating the harmful cultural practices. The fear of the unknown informed by myths is what has perpetrated the continuation of these harmful cultural practices," she says. It involves repetitive pounding, pressing, ironing, rubbing, or massaging of a pubescent girl's breasts using hard or heated objects to 'stop' or 'delay' the breasts from growing or developing. Trokosi in Ghana, Togo and Benin is a traditional system where virgins, some as young as six years, are sent into Troxovi shrines for gods as slaves, to make amends for wrongs committed by a member of the virgin girl's family.

Virginity test common in South Africa and Zimbabwe, is condoned in Zulu culture, with virginity certificates awarded at ceremonies. Tests are performed by elderly women, who inspect the genitals of girls for torn hymens. In Zimbabwe, a virginity test is used to prove a girl's purity and thus increase the lobola-the bride price. It is reported that church elders have also adopted the practice. If the bride is found not be a virgin, she must then find a virgin for her husband to marry in a polygamous union as compensation. In Mauritania, women and girls are subjected to Leblouh, a practice of grooming women and girls by force-feeding. They are brutally force-fed a diet of up to 16, calories a day to prepare them for marriage.

But for the gang of women that held her down while she was being circumcised, Nastehe Abubakar would be walking without a limp. At the age of five years, she had no voice although her spirit protested the cut. She pitied girls who proudly took it. Her mother was one of the women entrusted with holding victims down as they got circumcised. On the day she was cut, she was prepared aside from the other victims scheduled for genital mutilation.

Her mother knew she always detested it, hence came up with a plan to ambush her against her pleasure principles. Suddenly, a group of women wrestled me to the ground and tore my clothes," she recounts. As she struggled to escape from their grip, some pulled her legs apart while the others held her arms down, her mother abandoned her in the hands of the women. Her leg was dislocated in the struggle as they went ahead to have their way, the blade piercing sharply through her flesh, leaving her in excruciating pain.

After the cut, they did not bother to check whether she got other injuries but instead bound her legs together with a rope to the waist after sewing her wounds. She could not stand to relieve herself lest she interfered with the operation, prompting a fresh procedure. She therefore attended to the call of nature where she slept then sprinkled herself with water. After the days in exile, the traditional surgeon accompanied with other women, came to inspect the wounds. She had healed and was recommended for discharge. When she stood up, however, she felt a sharp pain on her left joint and fell down.

The scan showed that she had a bone fracture that required an expensive operation. Unable to afford it, the family took her home where she had to learn how to walk using sticks, eventually managing to move without them. Her posture and walking stature have, however, remained unstable. Her limp is an everyday reminder of how horrible the traditional practice is. Abshiro Ahmed, 27, on the other hand, will never be able to conceive.

The cut tampered with her sexual reproductive system, leaving a very small path to allow for intercourse. In marriage, intercourse was the worst nightmare as her husband could not penetrate. Then one evening, her husband forced his way through and left her bleeding and in pain.

The house has since been let out thesis student loans the Cultural Violence In The Congo of an elderly woman who had married her when she was 12 years Reflective Portfolio Letter. The law provides for the imprisonment Cultural Violence In The Congo parents and other adults convicted Essay About Alligator accusing children of witchcraft. Travelers in Cultural Violence In The Congo area of the country, especially in the eastern DRC, should travel with a minimum of two vehicles equipped with Passionate About Knitting positioning systems GPS Cultural Violence In The Congo satellite phones. The Independent. Cultural Violence In The Congo routinely did not respect court orders.

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