Veteran actress Jessica Lange has embarked on her first mission as a goodwill ambassador for the UNITED NATIONS (UN) - in the war-stricken eastern region of Congo.

OSCAR-winner Lange, who's meeting with child soldiers, malnourished youngsters and raped women during her visit to the African nation, became an ambassador for the UN's children's agency - UNICEF - in June (03). She began her four-day trip yesterday (07AUG03).

Northeastern Congo is still reeling from heavy fighting and brutal human rights abuses. Rebels and soldiers prey on unarmed civilians - killing, raping, looting and even eating parts of their victims.

The BLUE SKY star says, "In the past year I was so disgusted by the events of our government and I thought that many voices in the US and in the world were not being heard.

"This left me with a tremendous frustration and grief. When this opportunity presented itself I thought at last I can try to do something positive."

08/08/2003 02:37