In Ukraine War, a Long Journey Begins in Prosecuting Rape

She is calling on other countries that are members of the international court to consider opening their own prosecutions over Russian sex crimes allegations by asking for common jurisdiction – principle jurisprudence that some violate is abhorrent they are an affront to humanity as a whole, and thus can be tried by any nation’s court system. This early year, A German court convicted a Syrian intelligence officer of crimes against humanityand sentenced him to life in prison, for overseeing a security center in Damascus, where detainees were tortured, raped and mistreated.

The United States is not a party to the international tribunal in The Hague and cannot prosecute abuse cases in American courts without the recommendation of the United Nations Security Council, which Russia is almost certain of. will certainly veto.

As a permanent member of the Security Council, Moscow can also veto attempts to impose international sanctions on Russian individuals or entities believed to have committed sex crimes. or violence against women in Ukraine. Ms. Patten said the economic penalties enacted in recent years against officials who target female activists in Yemen or fail to prevent sexual abuse of detainees in Yemen. Libya, is a warning to stop gender-based violence elsewhere.

An annual report Ms. Patten’s office released this month concluding that UN investigators had verified nearly 3,300 cases of conflict-related sexual violence worldwide in 2021 – an increase of about 800 cases. Compared with the last year.

Ms Patten said: “If this sexual violence happens on the scale it is happening, with its brutality and the fact that justice remains painfully slow, it is not due to a lack of framework. Standard. “That’s because there’s no political will” to prevent or at least punish it, she said.

In Ukraine, much of the aggregated evidence to date about sexual assaults has been collected by investigators for NGOs, such as Ms. or journalists. Ms. Patten said many of the victims who reported their assaults were anonymous, refusing to be identified during phone calls to the government hotline.

Russian authorities have denied any responsibility for civilian killings, abuses and other atrocities in Ukraine since the invasion, and President Vladimir V. Putin has denounced evidence to the contrary. is “fake”.

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