World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Violence Against Women, A War Legacy In Bosnia & Herzegovina


Violence Against Women, A War Legacy In Bosnia And Herzegovina – UN Special Rapporteur

SARAJEVO / GENEVA (5 November 2012) – United Nations human rights expert Rashida Manjoo said that heightened domestic violence in Bosnia and Herzegovina is linked in many cases to the legacy of the war, and women and men suffering from Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and other war-related mental health problems as well as unemployment, poverty or addiction.

“As the government strives to assess and address the impact that the war had on men and how to ensure they do not place women at a higher risk of domestic violence, it should also recognize the experiences that women themselves faced during the war, and their entitlement to justice, reparations, and information and assistance on the missing and the disappeared,” said the UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women at the end of her official mission* to the country.

“It is crucial for government authorities at all levels to recognize the existence of civilian women victims of rape and torture, regardless of their ethnic or religious backgrounds, and to ensure that they have equal access to remedies and services, regardless of their physical location within the country,” the expert stressed.

The Special Rapporteur urged the government “to ensure that the specific forms of sexual violence and the high prevalence rates experienced by women are adequately taken into consideration when implementing any initiatives to provide justice and effective remedies to victims,” while acknowledging the need to recognize the existence of male victims of war-time rape.

Ms. Manjoo welcomed official initiatives to adopt a Transitional Justice Strategy to ensure access to justice and reparation for all civilian victims of war, including survivors of sexual violence; a Law on the Rights of Victims of Torture and Civilian Victims of War, to ensure access for civilian victims of war to equal social benefits; and the development of the Programme for Improvement of the Status of Survivors of Conflict related Sexual Violence.

However, she noted, “a very relevant fear shared by interviewed survivors of war-time rape and torture is the fact that time continues to pass by with no justice being served. It is crucial to speed up efforts and achieve political solutions at State level,” the rights expert noted.”

In her view, transitional justice actions should ensure the public acknowledgment and memorialization of women victims, their access to compensation, including non-material damages, and their empowerment. “This is particularly important considering the country’s overall economic situation and how unemployment and poverty impact all people but women victims of violence in particular,” she underlined.

“I encourage the authorities of Bosnia and Herzegovina to speedily finalize the adoption of these legislative and programmatic initiatives, and call on the authorities of both the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Republika Srpska to actively participate in their implementation,” Ms. Manjoo said.

The Special Rapporteur warned, nonetheless, that the success of such initiatives is hampered by the high levels of fragmentation in legislative standards and a lack of coherence among implementing authorities, which often results in the non-realization of women’s civil, political, social, economic, and cultural rights, and the lack of effective redress for women who have been victims of past and present violence.

“The full realization of women’s rights is impaired by the structure of the country’s political institutions and the fact that no State level authority has the jurisdiction to ensure the adequate implementation of the international human rights obligations adopted by the State,” she warned.

During her eight-day mission, Ms. Manjoo met with representatives of State level authorities; entity and cantonal level authorities of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina; entity and municipal level authorities of the Republika Srpska, as well as representatives of civil society organisations, UN agencies, and the donor community, including victims associations and service providers.

The Special Rapporteur will present a report with her final findings and recommendations the Human Rights Council in June 2013.

(*) Read the full end-of-mission statement: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=12742&LangID=E

--

Ms. Rashida Manjoo (South Africa) was appointed Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences in June 2009 by the UN Human Rights Council. As Special Rapporteur, she is independent from any government or organization and serves in her individual capacity. Ms. Manjoo also holds a part-time position as a Professor in the Department of Public Law of the University of Cape Town. Learn more, visit: http://www2.ohchr.org/english/issues/women/rapporteur/index.htm

UN Human Rights Country Page – Bosnia and Herzegovina: http://www.ohchr.org/en/countries/enacaregion/pages/baindex.aspx

Check the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women: http://www2.ohchr.org/english/law/cedaw.htm

UN Human Rights, follow us on social media:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/unitednationshumanrights
Twitter: http://twitter.com/UNrightswire
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/UNOHCHR

Check the Universal Human Rights Index: http://uhri.ohchr.org/en


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Myanmar Election: UNICEF Urges Prioritisation Of Children

With 99 days to go before Myanmar elections, UNICEF urges candidates make children the clear winner More>>

Liberia Thousands Of Unregistered Children Born During Ebola Crisis

Thousands of unregistered children born in Liberia during Ebola crisis at risk of exploitation – UNICEF More>>

UN Refugee Agency Envoy Angelina Jolie Visits Myanmar

UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie Pitt (left) in Myitkyina township, Kachin State, Myanmar, meeting with some of the 100,000 displaced people who currently live there. Photo: UNHCR/T.Stoddart More>>

As Health Needs Rise In Somalia, Funding Hits New Low

As health needs rise in Somalia, funding hits new low, cutting off 1.5 million from care – UN More>>

Need To End Violence Against Children In Conflict

‘We should be outraged’ more not being done to end violence against children in conflict – UNICEF chief More>>

On Mandela Day, UN Joins Call To Promote Community Service

Nelson Mandela, then Deputy President of the African National Congress of South Africa, raises his fist in the air while addressing the Special Committee Against Apartheid in the General Assembly Hall. UN Photo/P. Sudhakaran More>>

Some $3.2 Billion Needed For Ebola Recovery Efforts

Some $3.2 billion needed for Ebola recovery efforts in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone – UN More>>

World Day: UN Spotlights Plight Of Vulnerable Populalations

Syrian refugees fleeing the fighting near the Syrian city of Kobani wait in a holding area before boarding buses in Turkey (September 2014). Photo: UNHCR /I. Prickett More>>

Afghanisatan: Direct Talks Between Government And Taliban

The United Nations Security Council has welcomed the recently held direct talks between Afghan Government and Taliban representatives as a step towards “peace and reconciliation” in the region. More>>

Eradicating World Hunger By 2030

Agriculture workers collect carrots on a farm in Chimaltenango, Guatemala. Photo: World Bank/Maria Fleischmann More>>

Bangladesh: Flood Leads To UN Agency Providing Food Relief

Anwar Hossain unloads cartons of High Energy Biscuits from a pickup truck and transfers them to a distribution center in Kawar Khop union, Ramu upazila, Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. Photo: WFP/Kamrul Mithon More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news