- Strangers in a strange land
With the United Kingdom criticised for opting out of a European Union plan to resettle thousands of migrants from Africa and the Middle East, what should be the Christian response to immigration and does Scripture offer any guidance?
- Home News
- World News
- Parish Practice
- Letters Extra
- The living Spirit
- Pope in Latin America: Paraguay hopes Francis will make historic gesture of solidarity during three-nation trip
- Leading Catholics urge Duncan Smith to rethink further cuts ahead of emergency budget
- Anti-government protests ahead of Pope’s visit to South America
- Closure of London's Heythrop College puts Jesuit mission and 91 jobs at risk
- What is going on in Brentwood Diocese? Mike Lee
- What happens when you euthanase the mentally ill Sheila Hollins
- The argument between Greece and Germany is about far more than money Revd Dr Giles Fraser
Government agents in the Democratic Republic of Congo rape and sexually abuse women in religious organisations to punish them for being politically active, the charity Freedom from Torture has revealed.
In a report released ahead of a major international summit in London on preventing sexual violence, Freedom from Torture said that rape was used as torture by prison and security officers outside conflict zones and went unacknowledged and unpunished.
“Many of the women we treat were originally arrested because of their charity and human rights work - and many are affiliated with religious organisations,” a spokeswoman said.
The report Rape as Torture in the DRC analysed evidence from 34 medical reports and found that all but one woman had been raped multiple times and that all the women had also been burnt or cut with knives. The majority of the women identified as Christian (29 out of the 34) most of whom were Catholic and one Protestant.
The DRC has signed up to the Protocol on Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict to be launched by the UK Government this week. But the charity said that it could not be relied upon to tackle the situation.
The international community must acknowledge that rape as torture takes place outside conflict zones in many countries, it added, and should recognise this in asylum policies.
Above: Women, many of them victims of sexual violence, listen to a talk at Panzi hospital in Bukavu, South Kivu province, in eastern Congo. Photo: CNS photo/Reuters/Newscom