Too Little Justice for Victims of Sexual Violence in Post-Conflict Countries
Tuesday, August 7, 2007 4:39 PM

While the recent decisions by the Special Court for Sierra Leone to give lengthy prison terms for crimes against humanity, including rape, have been widely applauded, too many women will never see justice. During the 11 year civil war more than 50 percent of Sierra Leone’s women were victims of sexual violence, yet only 11 suspects have been indicted for these crimes thus far. These recent rulings, however, continue the precedent set by International Criminal Tribunals in both Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia in that rape is considered to be a crime against humanity, and thus among the worst violations of international law. Recognizing the need for the international community to do more to combat sexual violence, 12 United Nations organizations have joined together to form the UN Action against Sexual Violence in Conflict.

Compiled from: Heyzer, Noeleen, “Rape and Post-Conflict Justice,” The Star, 2 August 2007.