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2006.11.17
SOUNDBITE (SWAHILI) Unidentified 12 year old girl: “I went to fetch water and when I was almost finished, I felt someone come behind me. I saw that it was somebody in military uniform. He took a stone and stuffed it in my mouth and carried me off into the bushes. He hit me in the face and held my throat. And then raped me.” A story almost as hard to listen to as it was for this 12-year-old girl to tell. Sexual violence against women and girls in the Democratic Republic of Congo has reached epidemic proportions. Last year alone, there were 25,000 rape cases in the east of the country – and those are only the reported numbers. Violence and displacement has been consuming this vast country in the heart of Africa for years. Estimates place the death toll at around four million in the last decade alone – conflict, disease and malnutrition have combined to make this the world’s deadliest Children are caught up in the violence as refugees, victims and some are even forced to fight themselves. In a special “Child Alert” report on the Democratic Republic of Congo, UNICEF says the world must do something to help the country and its children in particular. SOUNDBITE (ENGLISH) Anthony Bloomberg, UNICEF Representative in DR Congo: “There is a perception that Congo is a hopeless case and there is a question as to the worthwhile nature of investments in this country. First of all, I don’t think the world has a choice. This country is too big, has too large a population, is too central in Africa to be ignored.” Peace is the missing link between a violent past and a more hopeful future. The country’s first free election in 40 years will take place on July 30th – an opportunity to restore order and create stability. SOUNDBITE (ENGLISH) Anthony Bloomberg, UNICEF Representative in DR Congo: “We have to give all of our support to the new government, to the Congolese people to make a fresh start, to give children a fresh start and let children be the engine of positive development of this country into the future.” It is clear that children must be at the heart of the post-election agenda. Nothing else can have a greater effect in shaping this country’s future. In the Democratic Republic of Congo, this is Martin Bell reporting for UNICEF Television. UNITE for children. *** Asset Name : UNICEF: Childhood under attack in DR Congo Asset Duration: 02 min 41 secs Shoot City: Various Shoot Country: Congo Shoot Date: Jun 1 2006
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