Soaring sexual violence pushes S.Leone to face 'rape culture'

What you need to know:

  • Thousands of children and young girls were raped last year in Sierra Leone -- a silent epidemic of suffering in one of the world's poorest countries.
  • According to police statistics, recorded cases of sexual and gender-based violence almost doubled last year, reaching 8,505 in a population of 7.5 million, up from 4,750 a year earlier.
  • Reports of rape and the sexual penetration of minors, as child rape is legally termed, have steadily increased, according to the Freetown-based Rainbo Initiative.
  • Those looking for an explanation of Sierra Leone's rape crisis often turn to the country's violent recent past.

FREETOWN,

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