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Central African Republic: UN Peacemakers Accused of ‘Sex Abuse’

Central African Republic

UN peacemakers in Central African Republic have been accused of “sex abuse” and exploitation. A total of 120 international peacemakers  will be sent back to their native places after the allegations were aired, according to UN.

The case occurred in Bambari on Thursday,  after Parfait Onanga-Anyanga, the UN envoy for CAR travelled to the city.

The incriminated soldiers are from the Republic of the Congo and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Both the governments have been notified about the cases.

Eight new cases are under scrutiny.

A fact-finding expert from UN Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) was sent by MINUSCA, to find the evidences. As per the investigation and evidences gathered, there were five minors and one adult who were sexually exploited.

“Due to the gravity of these allegations and given the information collected through the initial fact-finding, the United Nations has decided to take immediate measures, including the repatriation of the 120 Republic of Congo soldiers who were deployed to Bambari from 17 September to 14 December 2015,” the Mission announced, according to a report by UN News Centre.

A team of Human Rights Watch researchers, passed the information to the mission, in regard to ensure medical and psycho-social care for the victims. The cases came to notice on 21 January.

According to a report by BBC, an armed soldier raped 14-year-old girl near the airport. The abuse case appeared after the Congolese peacekeepers were temporarily assigned to guard the city’s airport.

There have been 22 other allegations of sexual abuse during UN’s peacekeeping mission in CAR, according to UN assistant secretary-general Anthony Banbury.

Last month, European troops had also been accused of child sex abuse. Girls of age-group between 14 and 16 said that Georgian members of the EU’s operation Eufor, raped them.

Another case was reported where a seven-year-old girl and a nine-year-old boy alleged French troops for child abuse. The troops were assigned to stop violence between Christian militias and largely Muslim rebels.

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