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South Africa begins investigation into peacekeeper sex abuse in Congo

Investigators deployed to the DRC

Night patrol by MONUSCO Police at the headquarters of Congolese political parties ransacked during violent political protests on 19 and 20 September 2016 in Kinshasa. Image via Flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/monusco/29665178860

A team of investigators have arrived in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to investigate allegations made against two South African soldiers in the DRC, the Daily Vox can confirm.

Adama Adama Ndao, head of the conduct and discipline team for the UN peacekeeping mission in the the DRC (Monusco), told The Daily Vox on Monday that the South African team arrived in the country and investigations were underway.

“The South African team arrived on 17 April, they will be looking to the matter,” Ndao said.

The two South African soldiers have been accused of sexual exploitation in incidents that took place in October 2016 and January 2017. Both soldiers have had their UN salaries suspended as the investigations are underway.

There have been at least seven cases of sexual exploitation and abuse against peacekeepers in the DRC since the beginning of 2017.

Peacekeeper as predator: when sexual abuse by UN forces runs rife

In April, an Associated Press investigation found that there were as many as 2 000 allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse across UN missions between 2004 and 2016. The UN says it is strengthening its reporting mechanisms, but activists say the UN is reluctant to punish their troops.

The South African government had not responded to a request for comment at the time of publication.

Featured image via Flickr

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