#Human Rights
United States of America

"The atrocities perpetrated by armed groups are of an unimaginable brutality that goes far beyond rape. They aim at the complete physical and psychological destruction of women. They are brutally gang raped, often in front of their families and communities. In numerous cases, male relatives are forced at gun point to rape their own daughters, mothers or sisters. Frequently women are shot or stabbed in their genital organs after they are raped," informs author Eve Ensler.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DROC) is the unfortunate country which houses the brutality described by Eve in the previous paragraph. For about a decade now the DROC has been involved in a civil war in which rape and violence against women has become the newest weapon and war tactic. Sadly, the rape does not end with the women; there are thousands of cases of children being raped as well. Over the past decade it is estimated that hundreds of thousands of women and girls have been raped in the DROC.

The following is a true account of violence in the DROC against a family of civilians, “May fifteenth of this year four heavily armed combatants came to our house. I wanted to hide my children, but I didn’t have time. They went after my daughter, and I knew they would rape her. But she resisted and said she would rather die than have relations with them. They cut off her left breast and put it in her hand. She said, “Please kill me.” They took a knife and put it to her neck and then made a long vertical incision down her chest and split her body open. She was crying, but finally she died. She died with her breast in her hand.”

Besides being cast out from society, rape victims are often infected with HIV or fistula. Fistula is a series of tears between the vagina, bladder and rectum due to brutality during rape and renders it’s victim incontinent. It is a rare ailment in developed countries, but in the DROC it is a frequent happening. There are hundreds of thousands of rape victims who often get fistula as a result of their rape, but only two hospitals in eastern Congo equipped for fistula repair surgery.

The violence, the brutality, the stealing of innocence, the raping, it all needs to stop. With thousands of reported rapes a month, the Democratic Republic of the Congo cannot wait. The hundreds of thousands of victims suffering from complications due to rape cannot wait. The potential other millions of victims cannot wait. They need help, today. They need our government’s help, today. But most of all they need your help, they need your signature. Today.

We, the undersigned, call on the U.S. Congress to aid the Democratic Republic of the Congo in the area of health care for the physical complications resulting from the brutality of the mass rapings on the female citizens of their nation.

We are petitioning for more competent hospitals equipped with adequate technology to meet their needs.

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The U.S. Aid for the Democratic Republic of the Congo petition to Congress was written by Erin and is in the category Human Rights at GoPetition.