Sexual Violence against Women in the Democratic Republic of the Congo: Population-Based Estimates and Determinants

Amber Peterman, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
Tia Palermo, Stony Brook University, State University of New York (SUNY)
Caryn Bredenkamp, World Bank Group

Reports from the Democratic Republic of Congo indicate that sexual violence is widespread, but data-based estimates are limited. We use nationally-representative household survey data from 3,436 women ages 15 to 49 from the 2007 DRC Demographic and Health Survey in conjunction with population estimates to analyze country-wide levels of sexual violence and perform multivariate logistic regressions to analyze correlates of sexual violence. Approximately 1.69 – 1.80 million women report being raped in their lifetime (407,397 – 433,785 in the last 12 months), and 3.07 – 3.37 million women report experiencing intimate partner sexual violence in a country of approximately 63.23 – 66.97 million. Reports of sexual violence are largely independent of individual-level background factors. However, women in Nord-Kivu are significantly more likely to report all types of sexual violence. Sexual violence, including intimate partner sexual violence, is more generalized than previously thought.

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Presented in Session 45: Physical and Sexual Violence