President Francois Hollande vowed on Thursday to make an example of any French troops found guilty of child sex abuse in Central African Republic as an internal U.N. report suggested that French, Chadian and Equatorial Guinea troops were implicated.
The allegations, which came to light this week due to an internal U.N. report summarizing interviews with victims, risks damaging the reputation of France’s peacekeeping operations in Africa. Reuters obtained the U.N. report on Thursday, though the Guardian newspaper was the first to report on the charges.
The report suggests that at least 13 French soldiers, two soldiers from Equatorial Guinea and three Chadian troops had been involved in alleged abuse between December 2013 and June 2014. Subsequent French inquiries identified some of them, a French judicial source said, though none had been questioned.
The 6-page report said the child victims interviewed alleged they had performed oral sex on the French troops, while accusing soldiers from Equatorial Guinea and Chad of sodomizing children.