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  2. The case of a 10-year-old boy raped in Tuva is being hushed up

The case of a 10-year-old boy raped in Tuva is being hushed up

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A 10-year-old child was raped in the Tuvan village of O-Shynaa in January 2023. A petition on the Change.org platform calling to punish the culprits was launched by locals on March 28. The following day, the Investigative Committee opened a criminal investigation.

On January 26, Baza reported on an alleged rape of a child at the national wrestling section in the village of O-Shynaa. According to human rights activist Alla Dongur-ool, the boy was raped by eleventh graders who have close ties to high-ranking officials in the republic. Activists suspect that this may be the reason why neither the authorities nor the children's ombudsman, Saizana Tovuu, commented on the situation for a long time.

The story only gained attention two months later when the boy's mother appealed to singer Borbaana Barzhay. The singer started a fund-raising for the child's treatment in Moscow, and the residents of Tuva raised 1.6 million rubles ($20,512) in just one day. They also initiated a petition demanding punishment for the three persons involved in the rape.

On March 29, the Investigative Committee announced the initiation of a criminal case for sexual violence. The suspects were placed under house arrest.

According to the Ministry of Health of Tuva, the child and his mother were scheduled to fly to Moscow on April 3 for treatment at the Sukhareva Mental Health Center. However, human rights activist Alla Dongur-ool expressed concern that the boy might be declared mentally ill in an attempt to discredit his testimony in court.

Alexander Khinstein, an influential Duma member, sent requests to the Ministry of Health, the Prosecutor General's Office, and the Investigative Committee to take the case under special control. Activists claim that the singer who organized the fundraising has been reported to the police for alleged disclosure of personal data.

In March, a resident of the Kemerovo Region was sentenced to 10 years in prison for repeatedly raping his daughter. The 15-year-old girl reported the abuse to her relatives, who turned to the Investigative Committee.

According to community activist Inna Chekmareva, law enforcement agencies often try to keep such cases quiet, claiming that publications about pedophilia can encourage potential or current offenders. However, this policy only makes the problem of child abuse worse, as victims may not know that they can seek help, while perpetrators remain confident that their actions will go unnoticed.


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