Central African bishop accuses UN forces of rape, abuse
A Catholic bishop in the Central African Republic accused UN peacekeeping troops of sexual abuse in his diocese and warned they could be guilty of crimes against humanity.
“Women are selling their bodies to the Blue Helmets out of desperation,” said Bishop Juan Aguirre Munoz of Bangassou.
“Many are doing this to avoid dying of hunger, and some of the abused are minors. When I asked their mothers what happened, they sank their heads.”
The bishop spoke while staying in his native Spain on UN advice after his diocesan vicar general narrowly survived a machete attack.
In an interview with Madrid’s Alfa y Omega Catholic weekly, he said up to 2,000 Muslims had been sheltering in the seminary adjoining Bangassou’s Catholic cathedral, protected by peacekeepers, since a wave of anti-Muslim violence in May 2017 left dozens dead.
Picture: UN peacekeeping soldiers patrol alongside women and children in 2015 in Bangui, Central African Republic. A Catholic bishop in the Central African Republic accused UN peacekeeping troops of sexual abuse in his diocese and warned they could be guilty of crimes against humanity. (CNS photo/Daniel Dal Zennaro, EPA).Tags: Africa, Bangassou, Bishop Juan Aguirre Munoz, Blue Helmets, Central African Republic, peacekeeping, sexual abuse, Spain, troops, UN, UN peacekeeping troops, United Nations