YEAR: 2013 / DURATION: 52 MINS / PRODUCTION: A&O BUERO / DIRECTORS: Marcel Kolvenbach and Pagonis Pagonakis/ VERSION AVAILABLE: ENGLISH
Previous broadcasts include WDR, SIC, VRT, TVE and MNET
"They took us to a small house. There they tore off our clothes and raped my friend and me. I was only 17 years old and still a virgin”, says Joari.
The shocking thing: Joari and her friend were allegedly raped by the people who were meant to protect her: UN peacekeepers.
20,000 UN peacekeeping troops were sent to bring stability to the Eastern provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo, where a war is raging between rebels and government forces. They were meant to protect civilians from assaults and sexual violence. But some of the saviours turned into perpetrators who abuse the helplessness and the extreme poverty of girls and women.
In this film, victims of UN soldiers speak out for the first time about the abuse they suffered. We also document how the UN Headquarters in New York have known about the problem with sexual assaults for a long time. By training their staff and introducing a “zero tolerance policy”, the UN tries to combat these incidents. The official line is that the numbers of assaults have been drastically reduced. However, UN insiders tell us that “on the ground, these measures have no effect at all.”