How one man gave Congo’s women hope

January 28, 2010

Life is hell for women caught up in the conflict in the Congo. But one remarkable doctor helps survivors to build a future

Why are the lives of African women worthless? It’s a question that Denis Mukwege asks every day that he works with the raped and mutilated women of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

As a young doctor he treated women in far-flung villages who would otherwise have had little chance of survival. He had wanted to deliver babies. Instead, he saw things he had never expected: the women who came to him had untreatable conditions, caused by torture and rape. There were old women, young girls, babies. The villages he visited had been devastated by planned outbreaks of sexual violence; the men murdered and the women made outcasts for ever. He saw his country plundered in an endless conflict, and his own life turned upside down by stories too horrible for nightmares.

Dr Mukwege fo… [more]

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