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Dozens raped during expulsion of migrants from Angola

President João Lourenço of Angola during the 10th BRICS Summit in Johannesburg, South Africa, July 26, 2018. Photo: Human Rights Watch

Officials of the United Nations have disclosed that women and children have been raped and subjected to other abuses during a mass expulsion of migrant workers from Angola to Democratic Republic of Congo.

Thousands of workers have been deported by Angola in recent months, the size of the expulsion is not yet known, but 12,000 workers have passed through one border crossing near the Congolese town of Kamako in the past six months, Reuters reports.

According to previously unreported figures from the United Nation’s migration agency, the International Organization for Migration (IOM).

Last month, UN staff visited the area and wrote an internal preliminary report on the situation, according to the Reuters news agency.

“Girls and women are arrested wherever they are, without the necessary needs, detained and then separated from their children and husbands, subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment, sometimes raped,” the report said.

The report, which is yet to be published, did not explicitly identify the perpetrators. A doctor working in the area blamed civilians in the DRC and Angolan security forces.

A doctor working in the area blamed civilians in Congo and Angolan security forces.

A spokesperson for Angola’s migration authority, Simão Milagres, said there had been an increase in expulsions in the past few weeks but denied that rapes and other abuses had occurred.

Writing by Muzha Kucha; Editing by Adeniyi Bakare