More than 1,100 women are raped every day in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), making sexual violence against women 26 times more common than previously thought, a study concluded Wednesday. More than 400,000 women and girls between the ages of 15 to 49 were raped in DRC during a 12-month period in the years 2006 and 2007, according to the study published in the American Journal of Public Health.
Now that is 26 times more than the 15,000 women that the United Nations has reported were raped there during the same 12 months. Researchers who have done the study have indicated that the much higher figures still represent a conservative estimate of the true prevalence of sexual violence because of underreporting of cases due to stigma, shame, apparent impunity and exclusion of younger and older age groups as well as men.
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