Sexual Abuse by Peacekeepers Stains the UN's Image

Exposure to gruesome acts of sexual violence make women and children in conflict-affected areas some of the most vulnerable groups of people in the world. It is all the more unconscionable then, writes Aditi Lalbahadur for Africa Portal, when the abuse is perpetrated by United Nations peacekeepers deployed in missions whose mandate is to protect them.

A young mother in the Central African Republic, right, was raped when she was 13. She subsequently named her baby after Gladys Ngwepekeum Nkeh, left, the UN police officer from Cameroon who cared for her after the assault.

Photo: UN

Allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse reported against UN peacekeepers by year.

United Nations peacekeeper Major Seitebatso Pearl Block of South Africa has been commended for developing a short message service (SMS) campaign to combat gender-based abuse by connecting with women in remote parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

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