Attack on Congolese doctor sparks outrage from UN envoy on sexual violence in conflict

27 October 2012

The United Nations envoy on sexual violence in conflict has voiced her outrage at the attack against a doctor in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) widely admired for his work with rape survivors, and called on the Government to bring the perpetrators to justice.

“I am appalled and outraged by the cowardly attack against Dr. Denis Mukwege and his family,” Zainab Bangura said in a statement, referring to the incident which took place on Thursday night and which was also condemned by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

Dr. Mukwege, the founder and Director-General of the Panzi Hospital in Bukavu in South Kivu province, was attacked in his home by armed men who shot and killed his security guard. He and his family were not hurt in the attack.

“I know Dr. Mukwege personally, and greatly admire his life-saving work in the DRC which gives hope to so many thousands of Congolese,” stated Ms. Bangura, who is the Secretary-General's Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict.

“Not only a skilled surgeon who has treated tens of thousands of survivors of sexual violence, Dr. Mukwege is also a role model and advocate in his own country and internationally who has courageously and tirelessly dared to speak out against the horrific crime of sexual violence,” she added.

The Special Representative called on the Government of the DRC to spare no effort to keep Dr. Mukwege and his family safe and to swiftly bring those responsible to justice.

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UN chief condemns attack on home of renowned doctor in eastern DR Congo

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemns in the “strongest possible terms” an attack which took place on Thursday night at the home of Dr. Denis Mukwege, a physician internationally known for his work with rape victims in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), according to Mr. Ban's spokesperson.