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BUKAVU, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO - OCTOBER 29: A bed stands empty in the ward for women recovering from surgery on October 29, 2007 at Panzi hospital outside Bukavu, DRC. Most of the women here are suffering from Fistula, in this area mainly a result of violent rape. Many of the women in the hospital has been raped and abused by rebels and government soldiers. About 10 women and girls show up at the hospital every day and Dr. Denis Mukwege, a gynecologist and his staff does up to 20 reconstructive operations every day. He often has to perform complicated surgery to reproductive and digestive parts of the women. The DRC conflict has seen an unprecedented high rate of rape and sexual abuse of women. The culprits are both different rebel groups and government soldiers and very few are punished. About 27,000 sexual assaults were reported in South Kivu province alone in 2006, according to the United Nations. (Photo by Per-Anders Pettersson)
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