Tatsat Chronicle Magazine

UN Urges Fight Against Sexual Violence in Conflict

June 18, 2022

UN Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, Virginia Gamba, said that at least 14,200 children were confirmed victims of sexual violence. “This is just the tip of the iceberg,” she added.

Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict Pramila Patten and EU Foreign Minister Josep Borrell released a joint statement today calling on the international community to combat sexual violence and protect future generations from such crimes.

“The time has come to abandon the passive position and aim at addressing the causes and hidden factors that provoke sexual violence, as well as declare war on social norms and stop blaming the victim,” the statement said.

Its authors are outraged by the plight of civilians in war-torn Ukraine and are deeply concerned about reports of sexual violence. “We condemn such crimes in the strongest terms and call for an immediate end to them,” the document says.

A wave of military coups and power grabs, from Afghanistan to Guinea to Myanmar, has set societies back in the struggle for women’s rights. Conflicts around the world lead to increased levels of violence, as well as harassment and intimidation of public figures and activists.

“It is very important to create a safe environment in order to, first, prevent sexual violence, and if such cases occur, provide victims with the opportunity to report them and receive the necessary assistance,” urged Pramila Patten and Josep Borrell.

The head of the United Nations Population Fund, Natalia Kanem, stressed that “any war provokes a nightmare of sexual violence.” “The bodies of women and girls turn into battlefields,” she said. “Rape is used as a weapon of war, just like bombs that blow up buildings or tanks that crash into crowds.” She called on global leaders to unite in the fight against sexual violence and seek justice for the victims.