Excerpts from The New Internationalist [posted to pnews-L]: "RAPE: WEAPON OF WAR" [Written by Angela Robson, a London-based freelance journalist specializing in human-rights issues.]

"...The sexual abuse of women in war is nothing new. Rape has long been tolerated as one of the spoils of war, an inevitable feature of military conflict like pillage and looting. What is new about the situation in Bosnia is the attention it is receiving - and the recognition that it is being used as a deliberate military tactic to speed up the process of 'ethnic cleansing'. According to a recent report by European Community investigators, rapes are being committed in 'particularly sadistic ways to inflict maximum humiliation on victims, their families, and on the whole community.' [The Warburton Report, European Community, 1993.] In many cases the intention is 'deliberately to make women pregnant and to detain them until pregnancy is far enough advanced to make termination impossible'. Women and girls aged any[where] between 6 and 70 are being held in camps throughout the country and raped repeatedly by gangs of soldiers. Often brothers or fathers of these women are forced to rape them as well. If they refuse, they are killed...."

"....Governments must face up to the fact that rape in war can no longer be tolerated. Women's groups from all over the world are campaigning vigorously for the prosecution of rape as a war crime and, as the World Conference approaches, petitioning the UN to recognize women's rights as human rights. If human rights are to be universally respected and protected, they say, then they must apply to the lives of over half of the human race--- women...."

Go Back to Shy David's Sexual Assault Page.