Sexual Violence Grows in African War-Zones
Friday, February 15, 2008 3:13 PM

The UNICEF Deputy Executive Director Hilde Frafjord Johnson has recently expressed her growing concern about the relationship between deadly conflict and sexual violence.

The UN has warned that sexual violence taking place in conflict zones on the African continent is no longer restricted to combatants, but that citizens are perpetuating rape as well, and in astonishing proportions.

Ms. Johnson told BBC News that "When societies collapse there seems to be a licence to rape."  The trend that she and other UNICEF workers are noticing is that sexual violence seems to follow deadly conflict, because the "social norms crumble."

In response to this concern, UNICEF is launching a campaign to raise $856 million to provide aid and support to victims of sexual violence.

Compiled from: "Africa War Zones' 'Rape Epidemic,'"  BBC News, International Version,, 13 February 2008.