Three UN peacekeepers go on trial in Democratic Republic of Congo on rape charges

Three UN peacekeepers go on trial in Democratic Republic of Congo on rape charges

[JURIST] The trial of three UN peacekeepers accused of sexual misconduct in the Central African Republic (CAR) began on Tuesday in front of a tribunal in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Two of the peacekeepers are charged with raping minors, and a third is charged with attempted rape of a minor during a peacekeeping mission in 2013. All threepleaded not guilty [Al Jazeera report].

This is the latest development in the rise of allegations [CRIN Timeline] against UN peacekeepers of sexual abuse and exploitation. Last month UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon [official profile] released a report recommending increased measures [JURIST report] to be taken for all countries involved. The report documents a total of 99 allegations in 2015, 69 from countries with peacekeeping missions. The largest number of allegations, 22, came from the CAR, followed by the DRC and Haiti. Also last month 20 former UN peacekeepers went on trial [Reuters report] in the DRC following rape accusations. In December Ban made a pledge to review allegations [text, PDF] that found the UN had not responded properly to information regarding crimes by non-UN soldiers upon children in the CAR. In February the UN identified seven new possible victims [press release] of abuse in the nation. In January UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein [official profile] said his office is investigating allegations of sexual abuse [press release] against children in the CAR by EU forces [JURIST report].