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The mission of Child Soldier Relief Foundation (CSR), a 501 (c)(3) non-profit, tax-exempt organization designated by the Internal Revenue Code, is to advocate on behalf of child soldiers by serving as a central repository of information on all topics relating to the topic of child soldiers.

Lubanga Trial: Week 18 in Review – RAPE OF GIRL SOLDIERS

On June 9, the witness who testified last week against Lubanga continued his testimony explaining to the defense why he had not originally mentioned to investigators that he had been a member of the UPC.

“This story about the UPC, I will not tell it [to] my children,” he told the court. “Nothing hurts me more than what I lived through in the UPC. I never like to tell it to anyone.”

A witness told prosecutors that when child soldiers were not learning how to use weapons they were playing with marbles and that in the Mandro training camp, young girls did the cooking for everyone. The witness further estimated that about 75 percent of the militia were child soldiers and that many of these children had joined because they wanted revenge for family members who had been killed.

The same witness told the Court last Thursday Lubanga was not a “military man” and therefore not around while there was “shooting amongst soldiers.”  The witness did say that Lubanga recruited men on the basis that Lubanga wanted peace in the DRC and that he would bring it through change with the UPC.

The witness finished the week’s testimony telling the Court that girl child soldiers were raped, “I clearly said that there was rape – that is, carrying out sexual intercourse with someone who is not willing or doing so by force,” the witness explained. “That is what I qualify as rape.” 

The witness further explained that he did not see how senior officers and others could not realize that rape was happening as officers sometimes took part in the rapes.

The trial resumes June 16.

This post was created by Kate Davey through sourcing from the reporting of Rachel Irwin for lubangatrial.org

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Filed under: Congo, Girl Soldiers, Intl Criminal Ct, Lubanga Trial, , , , ,

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