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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Speaking Out Strongly

As reported by various news sources while touring Africa yesterday, Sec. Hillary Clinton spoke out strongly against the brutality against women and their families being used in the Congo as a tool of war. 

Clinton told the Congolese President Joseph Kabila there would be "no impunity for sexual and gender-based violence" and later stated that "those who attack civilian populations using systematic rape are guilty of crimes against humanity."

As posted by CBS News in the article Hillary Clinton's Congo Trip Will Shed Light On Sexual Violence : 
"The eastern Congo has one of the highest rates of sexual violence against women in the world, with both soldiers and rebel groups using rape as a tool of war.
Sexual violence as thought of in the West does not begin to describe what the Congolese women endure. Not only are they raped repeated and physically brutalized, they are forced to watch their infants slaughtered upon birth.
The women's inability to control their bowels and urine comes from repeated rapes. The medical term is fistula. The walls of their uterus and bladder have been broken from repeated gang rapes by rebel soldiers, objects shoved roughly inside them and even guns fired into their vagina.
Just by going there, Secretary Clinton will shine further light on the sexual predation, perversion and incalculable brutality taking place in Congo. The sooner it is brought to an end, the better." 

A shocking and eye-opening discussion of the issue between Jim Lehrer and Zanaib Salbi of Women to Women International can be found at the PBS News Hour website:

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