War against Women - The Impact of Violence on Gender Relations
Report of the 6th Annual Conference, 16/17 September 1994
Working Paper of the Swiss Peace Foundation
Berne, August 1995
The impact of organized violence on gender relations
A scientific dialogue between women from Africa, Europe, and USA
The brutality of gender specific war crimes against women and children in former Yugoslavia, such as forced impregnation, forced prostitution and mass rape, prompted us to examine why violence against women is not limited to war, but is a strategy which reaches its extremes in times of war. However, is violence against women only limited to wars in Europe? We know of more than 50 mostly intra-state wars worldwide. Do we find similar patterns? At what moment does harassment of women turn into a political war against women? At the World Conference on Human Rights in Vienna, June 1993, the appointment of a Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women was a key point. At its 50th session in March 1994 the U.N. Human Rights Commission nominated a special rapporteur. The commission has expressed its will to condemn all violations of human rights of women in situations of armed conflict. What will be the future challenges for the U.N. Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women?
The Environment and Conflicts Project ENCOP of the Swiss Peace Foundation and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology raises questions regarding the impact of organized violence on gender relations in areas of ecological degradation.
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