Author: Sofie Rose
UN reports since mid-2014 reveal a significant increase in the number of reported cases of sexual violence perpetrated by terrorist groups in Syria. In interviews with female refugees in neighbouring countries, fear of rape is cited as a major factor influencing their flight form the Syrian Arab Republic. Moreover the atrocity of conflict-related sexual violence, including rape, sexual torture, forced marriage, and sexual slavery continues in Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan (Darfur) and furthermore in post-conflict zones such as, amongst others, DRC, Liberia, Côte d’Ivoire. To bring insight to this subject, in this article Sofie Rose, a master’s student in International Security and Law, examines the history behind the phenomenon and particularly the handling of it by the international community. The objective is to expose when it was brought to the agenda in the UN, and subsequently to identify what incidents, and/or structural changes that could have caused an increased attention to conflict related sexual violence within the international community.