We cannot allow this already underreported crime to slip further into the shadows. Perpetrators must be punished. Investment in recovery from the COVID pandemic must tackle the root causes of sexual and gender-based violence.António Guterres
Violence in any form is condemnable. All forms of violence are recorded in human history. The human trait to cause damage to other fellow human beings is deplorable. Animals do not cause harm to other creature except for satisfying their hunger. Is it due to the very nature of human beings that they might want to rule the world? Domestic violence is another form that haunts societies. It is the hunger for human beings too. Unfortunately, they have several forms of desire. While the armed conflicts, terrorist acts cause damage to fellow human beings, often resulting in many losing their lives. At no point of time in the recorded history, the world is free of armed conflicts. The deplorable consequence of many of the disputes is sexual violence. It is considered a weapon. To raise awareness and end conflict-related sexual violence, “International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict” is observed on June 19. It is the initiative of the UN. The UN adopted a resolution in 2015, and the choice of the day is as it is on this day; the Security Council passed a resolution condemning sexual violence as a tactic of war. Observation of the day is also an opportunity to honour survivors of sexual violence. Pay tribute to all those who have lost their lives worldwide when standing up against these crimes.
The UN defines conflict-related sexual violence as any form of sexual violence perpetrated against women, men, girls, or boys directly or indirectly linked (temporally, geographically or causally) to a conflict. Conflict-related sexual violence is grossly under-reported, and there are several reasons. Stigma and insecurity are some of them. COVID pandemic has compounded the containment measures and created institutional and socio-cultural barriers to reporting.
Sexual violence is now widely recognized as a deliberate strategy used to shred the fabric of society, to control and intimidate communities and to force people from their homes. It is rightly seen as a threat to international peace and security, a serious violation of international humanitarian and human rights law, and a major impediment to post-conflict reconciliation and economic development.Ban-Ki-Moon
former UN Secretary General
Widely regarded as “war’s oldest crime”, sexual violence is still a grim reality in today’s conflicts. Sexual violence relating to the conflict are reported at least in 19 countries in recent years. Often the victims and survivors belong to ethnic or religious minority groups. Sexual violence in conflict disproportionately impacts women and girls. The best way to address any human rights violation, including sexual violence in conflict, is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Achieving sustainable peace is not possible without women’s expertise, meaningful participation, and leadership.
Sexual violence is a severe public health and human rights problem with short- and long-term consequences on women’s physical, mental, and sexual and reproductive health. Whether sexual violence occurs in the context of an intimate partnership, within the larger family or community structure, or during times of conflict, it is a profoundly violating and painful experience for the survivor.
The nature of conflict and violence has substantially changed in the last 100 years. There are fewer conflicts among the nations and often waged between domestic groups. UN reports that there are currently ongoing armed conflicts in around three dozen countries, most of them in the Middle East, Northwest Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, and a major ongoing drug war in Mexico.
Ancient Indian scriptures say, “Where Women are honoured, divinity blossoms there, and wherever women are dishonoured, all action no matter how noble it may remain unfruitful.” With time has humanity progressed. If yes, the world should not be seeing conflicts and, more importantly, sexual violence because of them.
“Nothing good ever comes of violence. Hence the question, isn’t it silly that it still exists, then? “.Martin Luther