On International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict, SRSG Ján Kubiš urges Government of Iraq to deliver justice to the victims [EN/AR/KU]
Baghdad, 19 June 2017 – On the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict, the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General (SRSG) for Iraq, Mr. Ján Kubiš, urged the Government of Iraq to pursue accountability for perpetrators of sexual violence and justice for the victims.
This year’s International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict is being observed around the world under the theme of “Preventing Sexual Violence Crimes through Justice and Deterrence”.
Mr. Kubiš stressed this theme as the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict was marked in Iraq.
“Prosecution is a form of prevention as it can restrain the behavior of belligerents, deter future crimes, and break the vicious cycle of violence, impunity and revenge”, he stated.
Mr. Kubiš added: “I urge the Government of Iraq to deliver justice, and hold perpetrators accountable. This includes restorative and reparative justice, which is what the survivors of sexual violence and their families want. When survivors have the chance to tell their stories, to observe the sentencing of offenders, and to benefit from solidarity and support, it can counteract isolation and self-blame. It tells the community that what happened was not the victim’s fault.”
The SRSG commended the Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government for taking positive steps by appointing two high-level focal points on Conflict-Related Sexual Violence in Baghdad and Erbil, who will serve as points of contacts with the UN and the international community in furthering the implementation of the Joint Communiqué on Prevention and Response to Conflict-Related Sexual Violence signed in September 2016. Mr. Kubiš called upon the Government to accelerate establishing an inter-ministerial task force to oversee and coordinate implementation of the Joint Communiqué.
“The UN is positioning its responses to sexual violence and prevention work within the framework of the Joint Communiqué in partnership with the Government of Iraq and other key stakeholders, including civil society and religious leaders, with the focus on supporting survivors of sexual violence reintegrate back to their communities”, Mr. Kubiš said.