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Witch-hunt in Congo

Congolese women blamed for witchcraft and killed without trial

Though the Great African War, which encompassed 9 countries fighting on 50 fronts and became the deadliest conflict since World War II, ended in 2003, 70 different rebel groups still remain in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Never-ending clashes, murders of civilians and regular rebels’ attempts to seize towns in the resource-rich provinces of DRC leave locals trapped in poverty.

Desperate people could not find answers as to why their suffering continued. Untold hardship and lack of education became fertile ground on which false prophets, or Mujakazi, are thriving. They pretend to speak with God and know the reason for any misfortune. When family members die or fall ill, people of South Kivu, a Congolese province, ask Mujakazi for help. But in most cases, these self-proclaimed prophets accuse local women of witchcraft for the misfortunes. Women are then killed without any form of trial.

Are Congolese churches and police unable or unwilling to stop the Mujakazi?