South Africa begins probe into alleged sex abuse by peacekeepers in Congo

Two South African soldiers have been accused of sexual exploitation in incidents that took place in October 2016 and January 2017

A team of investigators have arrived in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to investigate allegations made against two South African soldiers in the country, according to a report by the Daily Vox.

Adama Adama Ndao, head of the conduct and discipline team for the United Nations (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 April 17, 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 while the UN investigaties the cases.

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

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 The Daily Vox

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