UN to tackle claim it mis­han­dled CAR rape cases

Sunday Observer - - NEWS -

LI­BRE­VILLE - The UN’s peace­keep­ing mis­sion in the Cen­tral African Repub­lic (MINUSCA) said on Friday that it would probe al­le­ga­tions that in­ves­ti­ga­tions into sex­ual abuse by UN sol­diers had been dis­as­trously mis­han­dled.

MINUSCA spokesper­son Vladimir Mon­teiro, reached by phone in the Cen­tral African cap­i­tal of Ban­gui, said the force would “ex­am­ine the al­le­ga­tions.”

A US-based NGO, Code Blue Cam­paign, on Wed­nes­day said a con­fi­den­tial source had given it 14 in­ter­nal case files re­gard­ing al­le­ga­tions of sex­ual of­fences against CAR civil­ians by UN troops. Com­plaints were made against UN sol­diers from nine coun­tries - Pak­istan, Zam­bia, Repub­lic of Congo, Bu­rundi, Morocco, Egypt, Cameroon, Gabon and Niger. But a “sham process” meant these com­plaints were never probed in depth, it said.

In eight of the cases, al­leged vic­tims were not ques­tioned to pro­vide ev­i­dence; po­ten­tially cor­rob­o­rat­ing wit­nesses were not sought out for in­ter­views; and in­ves­ti­ga­tors showed “over­whelm­ing bias” against those who com­plained, its re­port said.

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