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International News

MSF Presses Papua New Guinea on Rampant Sexual Violence

November 16, 2012

Unni Karunakara, president of Médecins Sans Frontièrs (MSF), also known as Doctors without Borders, recently urged the new government of Papua New Guinea (PNG) to address the epidemic levels of sexual and domestic violence in the country. Karunakara was in PNG to visit MSF projects targeting family and sexual violence and met with officials from the new government to advocate on behalf of this issue.

MSF estimates that 70 percent of women in PNG will be raped or physically assaulted in their lifetime. Karunakara stated that these levels of violence are very high for a country that is not at war or in a state of civil unrest. He noted that violence is how the society negotiates disputes, conflict between tribes, and relationships in the family. In its two projects -- one in a coastal city and the other in the southern highlands -- MSF sees 60 rape cases a month, and some of the women returned repeatedly.

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HIV /AIDS in Papua New Guinea
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