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FACTBOX-Women's law: Two decades of progress ? UN Women

Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation - Tue, 5 Jul 2011 23:53 GMT
Author: Rebekah Curtis
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LONDON (TrustLaw) – Over the past two decades, significant advances have been made in the recognition and prosecution of sexual violence crimes committed during conflicts, according to a report by UN Women.

Following are key facts from the report – Progress of the World’s Women – on the progress made:

The International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia is established. The Statute recognises rape as a crime against humanity and a series of landmark cases confirm sexual violence is a serious war crime. To date, there have been 29 convictions for sexual violence in this court.

In Prosecutor v Akayesu at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, it was found rape constitutes genocide and a crime against humanity for the first time. To date, there have been 11 convictions for sexual violence in this Court.

United Nations Security Council resolution 1325 recognises the role of women in peace-building, emphasising the need for their full participation in all efforts to promote peace and security.

The Rome Statute, which established the International Criminal Court, classifies a broad range of sexual and gender-based crimes as international crimes. Of the 23 indictments issued by the court, 12 contain sexual violence charges. In Prosecutor v Brima et al., the Special Court for Sierra Leone finds forced marriage an inhumane act constituting a crime against humanity.

United Nations Security Council resolution 1820 calls for effective steps to prevent and respond to acts of sexual violence as a central part of maintaining international peace and security.

(Compiled by Rebekah Curtis)

Access the interactive report site here

See related stories:

Gender laws alone no guarantee of justice--UN Women report

FACTBOX--Women's rights in today's world--UN Women

FACTBOX--Comparing women's rights in Europe and sub-Saharan Africa



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