A Congolese woman has been abducted twice by militants in the Democratic Republic of Congo, repeatedly raped and forced to cook and eat human flesh, a Congolese human rights organization told the United Nations Security Council on Wednesday.
Julienne Lusenge, chair of women’s rights group Female Solidarity for Integrated Peace and Development (SOFEPADI), told the woman’s story as she addressed the 15-member council on the conflict-torn eastern Congo.
The UN Security Council met regularly to brief on Congo, where heavy fighting between the government and rebel groups has sparked a wave of violence since late May.
Lusenge said the woman was kidnapped by CODECO militants when she went to pay ransom for another kidnapped relative. The woman told the human rights organization that she had been repeatedly raped and physically assaulted. Then she said the militants slit a man’s throat.
“They took out his entrails and asked me to cook them. They brought me two water containers to prepare the rest of the meal. Then they fed all the prisoners human flesh,” Lusenge told the Security Council, as he told the woman’s story. told.
Lusenge said the woman was released after a few days, but when she tried to return home she was abducted by another militia group whose members also repeatedly raped her.
“Again I was asked to cook and eat human flesh,” the woman, who eventually escaped, told SOFEPADI.
Lusenge did not name the second militant group during her council briefing. CODECO could not be reached for comment.
CODECO is one of several armed militias that have long been fighting for land and resources in the mineral-rich eastern Congo — a conflict that has killed thousands and displaced millions over the past decade.
The Congolese army has been engaged in fierce fighting since late May with the rebel group M23, which is conducting its most sustained offensive since a 2012-2013 insurgency that seized large parts of the territory.
UN peacekeepers have been deployed in Congo for more than 20 years.
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