Monday, February 21, 2011


AFTER MILITARY TRIAL FOR MASS RAPE - A Congolese court sentenced an army colonel to 20 years in prison Monday, convicting him of crimes against humanity in the highest-profile sexual violence case ever held in this nation where thousands are brutally raped each year. Prosecutors had sought the death penalty for Lt. Col. Mutuare Daniel Kibibi, 46, who was accused of ordering his troops to attack the village of Fizi on New Year’s Day where doctors later treated 62 women for rape. One woman testified that Kibibi himself raped her for 40 minutes. As the defendants were being led away in handcuffs, hundreds of people jeered at them, booed and shook their fists. Some shouted, “Kibibi! You thought you could get away with this! Now you are going to jail!” and “You must pay for your crimes!” Kibibi was convicted of four counts of crimes against humanity but will serve no more than 20 years in prison.

Three of his officers received the same sentences, and five others got lesser sentences. One man was acquitted and another, a minor, will be tried in juvenile court. Kibibi, who is married with eight children, denies all the charges and says the court testimony by his bodyguards was all part of a plot to denigrate him. Rape long has been used as a brutal weapon of war in eastern Congo, where soldiers and various militia groups use sexual violence to intimidate, punish and control the population. At least 8,300 rapes were committed in 2009, and aid workers say the victims have even included a month-old baby boy and elderly women. Activists said they hoped Kibibi’s trial would serve as a warning to others who are brutally attacking civilians.

A military court in Democratic Republic of Congo convicted army officers of ordering the rapes of people on New Year’s Day. More than 60 people were raped over a period of two days, hospital officials said. The total number of victims will never be known. Mwajuma Kashindi, wone of the women attacked, says “There were four soldiers in total. Three soldiers raped me. The fourth one was there to keep watch”. “My firstborn, my boy, he was crying so hard because he saw everything. He saw me being raped.” Soldiers “behaved like wild beasts,” terrorizing and attacking the defenseless civilians they had orders to protect. Acting worse than if they were Rakshasas, fulfilled their uncontrolled desires by raping single women or the wives of others.

The defenseless creatures, according to Brahma-samhitā, are the cows, brāhmanas, women, children and old men. ... Just as children are taken care of by the parents, women as a class should be taken care of by the father, husband or grown-up son. Those who are helpless must be taken care of by their respective guardians, otherwise the guardians will be subjected to the punishment of Yamarāja, who is appointed by the Lord to supervise the activities of sinful living creatures. The assistants, or messengers, of Yamarāja are likened here to vultures, and those who do not execute their respective duties in protecting their wards are compared to serpents. Vultures deal very seriously with serpents, and similarly the messengers will deal very seriously with neglectful guardians.

Śrīla A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda :
“The Śrīmad Bhāgavatam”
Purport in Canto 3 “El Status Quo”
Chapter 16 - Verse 10.
Bhaktivedanta VedaBase Network

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