Angelina Jolie Visits Congo to Stop Sexual Violence in War Zone

Angelina Jolie

Jolie and British Foreign Secretary visit the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda to end the use of rape as a weapon of war and call for support from other countries in the campaign.
Angelina Jolie performs her task as the U.N.'s refugee agency special envoy, paying a visit to Nzulo camp in Eastern Congo on Monday, March 25. She traveled with British Foreign Secretary William Hague in hope to end rape in war zone. They met victims of sexual violence, U.N. workers who helped them, as well as government officials to discuss the need to find solution for the issue.

Jolie said, "What we're here to do is try to scale it up and make this a world wide focus and it's due time, it's been going on every war, every crisis and it's often an afterthought and it's due time to end this and put an end to impunity and they deserve it."

"Sexual violence in conflict has to be resolved if conflicts are to be resolved because when rape is used as a weapon of war, it makes communities harder, to bring together and much harder for people to get on with their lives afterwards," Hague said. He added that he would bring the issue to the annual G8 meeting of foreign ministers in London in April.

Great Britain, the U.S.A., France, Canada, Japan, Germany, Russia and Italy are expected "to agree landmark measures to secure justice for survivors of sexual violence and deter perpetrators. These include a new International Protocol on the Documentation and Investigation of Rape and Sexual Violence, agreement that rape and sexual violence constitute grave breaches of the Geneva Convention so that universal jurisdiction can apply, and practical commitments to help affected countries," according to press release issued by the U.K. government.

Rebel groups as well as Congolese soldiers reportedly have used rape as the weapon of war. According to Associated Press, the International Rescue Committee has provided care to more than 2,500 women and girls who have been raped or abused over the years. The organization also distributes kits with flashlights, whistles and cleaning products so that women can avoid taking bath in places where the risk of being assaulted is high.

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