Study challenges assumptions on wartime sexual violence

A new study by the Simon Fraser University-based Human Security Report Project (HSRP), released today at the United Nations headquarters in New York, finds that there is no compelling evidence to support a host of widely held beliefs regarding wartime sexual violence.

The study, presented by HSRP director Andrew Mack, disputes the common that conflict-related is on the rise, and argues that the experience of a small number of afflicted by extreme levels of sexual violence is not the norm for all war-affected countries. Key findings include:

  • In more than half of the years in which countries around the world experienced conflict between 2000-2009, levels of reported conflict-related sexual violence were low to negligible.
  • There is no evidence to support frequent claims that rape as a "weapon of war" is widespread, nor that its incidence has been growing.
  • Domestic sexual violence victimizes far more women in war-affected countries than does the conflict-related sexual violence that is perpetrated by combatants.
  • Recent studies show that male victims and female perpetrators may be more numerous than generally believed.
  • The study also finds that the mainstream view of the impact of war on children's education as highly damaging is incorrect, and that in war-affected countries improve over time despite fighting, even in regions most affected by war.

More information: The complete study is available online at www.hsrgroup.org and will soon be available in print.

Related Stories

More than 1,100 rapes daily in DRCongo: study

date May 11, 2011

More than 1,100 women are raped every day in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), making sexual violence against women 26 times more common than previously thought, a study concluded Wednesday.

Relationship violence appears common among college students

date Jul 07, 2008

Violence between partners, friends and acquaintances appears prevalent both during and before college, according to results of a survey of students at three urban college campuses published in the July issue of Archives of ...

Recommended for you

Ozone air pollution could harm women's fertility

date 1 hour ago

Many urban and suburban areas have high levels of ground-level ozone, an air pollutant that can adversely affect lung and heart health. New research in mice suggests breathing high levels of ozone could also affect women's ...

Exercise can outweigh harmful effects of air pollution

date 3 hours ago

New research from the University of Copenhagen has found that the beneficial effects of exercise are more important for our health than the negative effects of air pollution, in relation to the risk of premature ...

Morocco confronts abortion taboo with proposed reform

date 5 hours ago

It was just 7 a.m. and Hoda was walking alone to a clinic in the Moroccan coastal city of Agadir. She skipped breakfast: the Senegalese doctor had told her that the abortion would be better done on an empty ...

Physician/Pharmacist model can improve mean BP

date Mar 27, 2015

(HealthDay)—A physician/pharmacist collaborative model can improve mean blood pressure (BP), according to a study published online March 24 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.