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Geopolitics

When Child Traffickers Operate Under The Guise Of Charity

In the Democratic Republic of Congo, a crackdown on trafficking rings is not enough - there is also the question of parental responsbility. And extreme poverty.

In the DRC, the most vulnerable
In the DRC, the most vulnerable
Alphonse Nekwa Makwala

KINSHASA Clandestine networks describing themselves as charities or claiming connections with churches have been tricking Congolese parents into releasing children into their care, only to sell the young victims as sex slaves or unpaid workers.

The information comes in a finding by a parliamentary commissionin in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). “Several teenage girls were taken to Lebanon to become sex slaves and be used for other types of dirty work,” says parliament member Benjamin Mukulungu, who estimates that between 500 and 1,000 children are still thought to be there.

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Coronavirus

The Main COVID Risk Now: Long COVID

Death rates are down, masks are off, but many who have been infected by COVID have still not recovered. Long COVID continues to be hard to diagnose and treatments are still in the developmental stage.

Long COVID feels like a never-ending nightmare for those who suffer from it.

Jessica Berthereau

PARIS — The medical examination took longer than expected in the Parc de Castelnau-le-Lez clinic, near the southern French city of Montpellier. Jocelyne had come to see a specialist for long COVID-19, and exits the appointment slowly with help from her son. The meeting lasted more than an hour, twice as long as planned.

“I’m a fighter, you know, I’ve done a lot of things in my life, I’ve been around the world twice… I’m not saying this to brag, but to tell you my background," says the 40-year-old. "These days, I’m exhausted, I’m not hungry, I no longer drive, I can’t work anymore, I have restless legs syndrome.” She pauses before adding sadly: “I can’t read anymore either.”

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