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Last Updated: Friday, 18 March, 2005, 06:02 GMT
UN action over DR Congo abuse
UN soldiers in Bunia
The abuse allegations rocked the UN mission in DR Congo
The UN has fired one employee and suspended six others without pay over allegations of sexual misconduct in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

UN spokesman Fred Eckhardt said one other member of the peacekeeping mission in DR Congo had resigned instead of facing disciplinary action.

He said action had now been taken against 17 civilian mission staff.

UN peacekeepers have been accused of using food and money to pay girls as young as 12 to have sex with them.


The former chief of staff of the DR Congo mission (Monuc), Jacque Grinberg, was among three people cleared of charges.

Allegations of sexual exploitation by peacekeepers in DR Congo started emerging around the eastern town of Bunia in early 2004. About 150 cases were reported.

In February, the UN announced that its troops in DR Congo had been ordered not to have sexual relations with Congolese.

About 16,700 UN peacekeepers are deployed in Congo to help secure a peace deal that ended the 1998-2002 war involving half a dozen African nations.

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