Ivory Coast: UN Report Highlights Lack of Justice for Rape Victims

The UN Operation in Cote d'Ivoire and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rightshave released a joint report addressing the barriers to justice for rape victims in the Ivory Coast. According to the report, less than a fifth of investigated rape claims lead to convictions, and perpetrators who are convicted face the lesser crime of indecent assault. Most women do not report rapes due to fear of stigma and social retaliation.

The UN report recommends that Ivory Coast revise its criminal code to clearly define rape and ensure that the crime is not prosecuted as a misdemeanor. The report also recommends providing rape victims with free legal aid and fully investigating and prosecuting all sexual offenses, even if a victim later withdraws her complaint.


Complied from: Guilbert, Kieran, Failed by courts, children bear brunt of rape in Ivory Coast, Reuters (July 21, 2016); Côte d’Ivoire: UN report calls for fight against rape to be strengthened, UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (July 11, 2016).