Congo rebels 'gang-rape women and babies'

Rebel soldiers gang-raped nearly 200 women and four baby boys within 10 miles of a United Nations peacekeepers' base, it was claimed last night.

Will Cragin, an American from the International Medical Corps, said: "Many women said they were raped in their homes in front of their children and husbands. And many said they were raped repeatedly by three to six men."

It is believed the 25 peacekeepers could do little about the 400 Rwandan and Congolese rebels who occupied the small town of Luvungi in eastern Congo and five nearby villages for four days. The UN said it was still investigating.

Mr Cragin's group was only able to get into the town after the rebels withdrew on 4 August.

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