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Geopolitics

Underage Congolese Preyed Upon, Forced To Be Prostitutes In Morocco

Looking for family members who have emigrated to Europe, or in search of better opportunities, Congolese girls instead find themselves prey at the hands of human traffickers.

Victims of sexual violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Victims of sexual violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Mohamed Ey'ekula

RABAT — Dressed in blue skin-tight pants that reveal her curves, a revealing top that showcases her breasts and knee-high black boots, Evelyne walks the streets surrounding a squalid building in J5, a district in the Moroccan capital of Rabat where many African immigrants live. "Psst," she calls to a middle-aged man carrying shopping bags. "Wanna come upstairs, honey?" she asks, swaying her hips.

Evelyn is just 15. She comes from Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and she is already a veteran prostitute, having been working the streets for two years. It all started in Maghnia, an Algerian town on the border with Morocco. "To reach Morocco, I was forced to prostitute in the transit camp where immigration candidates stay," she says. Like many other Congolese girls, she now does the "world’s oldest job" because of her family.

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Geopolitics

The Days After: What Would Happen If Putin Opts For A Tactical Nuclear Strike

The risk of the Kremlin launching a tactical nuclear weapon on Ukraine is small but not impossible. The Western response would itself set off a counter-response, which might contain or spiral to the worst-case scenario.

An anti-nuclear activist impersonates Vladimir Putin at a rally in Berlin.

Yves Bourdillon

-Analysis-

PARISVladimir Putin could “go nuclear” in Ukraine. Yes, this expression, which metaphorically means “taking the extreme, drastic action,” is now literally considered a possibility as well. Cornered and humiliated by a now plausible military defeat, experts say the Kremlin could launch a tactical nuclear bomb on a Ukrainian site in a desperate attempt to turn the tables.

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In any case, this is what Putin — who put Russia's nuclear forces on alert just after the start of the invasion in late February — is aiming to achieve: to terrorize populations in Western countries to push their leaders to let go of Ukraine.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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