Source: Sudan Tribune
Sudan is the seventh worst country in the world for sexual violence in conflict according to a report by global risk analysis firm, Maplecroft which rated neighbouring South Sudan as an "extreme high risk" country.

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The index published by Maplecrof is based on data over the last 15 years, grading the severity of abuse and the "systematic use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and the involvement of child soldiers either as victims or perpetrators of sexual violence during a conflict."

This week British foreign secretary, William Hague and United Nations goodwill ambassador, American actress, Angelina Jolie visited the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as part of a campaign to stop violence against women in conflict zones.

The pair will visit several African countries affected by sexual violence in conflict zones ahead of the G8 summit in May. Later this year, the issue will also be raised at the UN Security Council and General Assembly.

The United Nations, human rights groups and clinicians have long reported the widespread use of rape and sexual violence in the ten-year-old-conflict in Sudan’s western region of Darfur.

In 2005 the then UN Under-secretary for Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland said: "In Darfur, rape is systematically used as a weapon of warfare." Gender-based violence in Darfur was at its peak in the first few years of the conflict but instances continue to be reported.

South Sudan, which broke away from Sudan in 2011 also did not fare well in the report but was rated outside the ten worst countries. A Human Rights Watch report in August last year accused soldiers from South Sudan’s army of rape, torture and killing of civilians in Pibor county of the Jonglei state but the government has dismissed the reports as “not credible".

Of the nine countries that border Sudan and South Sudan six - Libya, Chad, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda and Ethiopia - were also as rated as "extreme high risk". Eritrea and Ethiopia were rated "medium risk", while Kenya was rated as "low risk".

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