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AP investigation: U.N. sex abuse in Congo


    A security guard closes the gate of the UN compound in the Congo Ituri province capital Bunia. By virtue of being the largest U.N. peacekeeping mission, Congo is also home to the highest number of sexual abuse and exploitation allegations in the world.

BUNIA, Congo >> Here are key findings from the third installment of The Associated Press investigation into the U.N.’s peacekeeping crisis:

1. Congo, home to the United Nations’ largest and most expensive mission, had the highest number of abuse and exploitation allegations since 2004. Of the roughly 2,000 complaints made against the U.N. worldwide, more than 700 came from the resource-rich African country.

2. With rare exceptions, sex abuse victims interviewed by the AP in Congo received no help. Instead, many were banished from their families for having mixed-race children — who also are shunned and have become a second generation of victims.

3. Although the AP found some 2,000 allegations against the U.N., the number of cases could be significantly higher. Last year, for example, there were 145 allegations recorded, but 311 known victims.

4. Of the some 2,000 allegations, about a quarter involved children. For some years, nearly half of the allegations involved minors. The alleged offenses included rape.

5. Despite reforms, sexual violence in Congo persists. So far this year, roughly one-third of the sexual abuse and exploitation allegations involving U.N. peacekeepers and personnel worldwide described events that occurred in Congo.

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