WORLDVIEWS

When Is an Attack on UN Peacekeepers a War Crime and When Is It Not?

The recent attack by a militia on the United Nations mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in which seven peacekeepers were killed, highlighted a question that the Security Council has hesitated to confront for years. What are the consequences when UN peacekeeping missions become parties to the conflict? The Security Council responded to the latest attacks on Monusco, as the … Read more

For Victims of Sexual Violence in War, Stigma Can Kill

In a year in which swaths of territory were liberated in Iraq and Syria from the grip of ISIS, enabling the release of women and girls and others from the extremists, the United Nations’ annual report on conflict-related sexual violence highlights the stigma that the victims encounter — from physical pain to profound depression — … Read more

BOOKS

The Secret Work on War-Crime Trials Before Nuremberg

It is widely believed that the Allied powers were in the dark about the “final solution” — the Nazi campaign to exterminate Europe’s Jews — until the discovery of the death camps, strewn with corpses and emaciated inmates, at the end of World War II. Yet Russia, Britain and the United States publicly declared their … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

To Better Prosecute Sexual Violence Crimes, Look to World War II

LONDON — Crimes of sexual violence consistently result from large-scale conflict and war around the world. Rape and enforced prostitution, among other gender-based crimes, are used as a tool to enhance violence and domination and to spread fear among civilians. Whether systematic or isolated in nature, such acts leave devastating physical and psychosocial wounds among … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

War Crimes Against Women and Girls Must Be Prosecuted

Three children walk to clean dishes in the Niger river in Gao, Mali.

  There is now overwhelming evidence that conflicts exacerbate pre-existing gender discrimination and put women and girls at heightened risk of sexual, physical and psychological violence. One appalling example of this evidence is the report recently to the Human Rights Council by the International Commission of Inquiry on Syria, which highlights the threat and use … Read more

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Congolese Warlord Found Guilty in Court’s First-Ever Trial

Thomas Lubanga

Thomas Lubanga, the Congolese militant accused of war crimes by recruiting child soldiers under age 15 to fight in conflicts in the eastern region of his country, has been found guilty of the war crimes by a three-judge chamber presiding at his case at the International Criminal Court in The Hague. The decision was made … Read more

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