Sierra Leone declares national rape emergency

Sierra Leone's President Julius Maada Bio declared rape and sexual violence a national emergency on Thursday, calling for an end to the culture of "indifference" and impunity surrounding it. His announcement follows a national outcry over the prevalence of sexual violence in the West African nation, where recorded cases of sexual and gender-based violence doubled last year, reaching 8 505 in a population of 7.8-million, according to police statistics.