The Blog offers information about recent decisions by international and internationalized tribunals, as well as relevant events, resources, and developments regarding gender and sexual-based violence. If you wish to contribute to the Blog, please This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

War Crimes Section of State Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina Orders Compensation for Wartime Rape Victim

The War Crimes Section of the State Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina has convicted two soldiers of repeatedly raping a woman during an attack on the village of Orahova in 1992 and in a landmark ruling, ordered the men to pay the victim 26,500 KM ($15,036) in damages.  For more information, see the State Court's press release on the verdict and media reports discussing the case.

UN Secretary General Releases Report on Conflict-Related Sexual Violence in 2014

On March 23, 2015, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon released a new report detailing conflict-related sexual violence occurring in 19 countries from January 1 through December 31, 2014. The report was compiled pursuant to paragraph 22 of Security Council resolution 2106 of 2013, in which the Security Council requested the Secretary General to report annually on the implementation of Security Council resolutions 1820, 1888, and 1960, all of which address the problem of sexual violence in armed conflict. The report describes the nature and context of sexual violence occurring in situations of armed conflict in Afghanistan, the Central African Republic, Colombia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Myanmar, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan (Darfur), the Syrian Arab Republic, and Yemen as well as post-conflict settings including Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cote d'Ivoire, Liberia, Nepal and Sri Lanka. Nigeria is also included under "Other Situations of Concern" owing to the crimes against girls and women committed in that country by Boko Haram. The report offers an overview of each of the situations, current efforts underway to address the incidence of sexual violence, and recommendations to improve responses to these crimes.

One Year Since 219 Girls Abducted in Chibok

Media reports are broadcasting protests in London, Paris, and Abuja marking the one-year anniversary since Boko Haram militants forcibly abducted 219 school girls from the Chibok community. Many of the girls have reportedly become victims of forced marriage. According to Amnesty International, the militants have abducted 2,000 girls and women since the start of last year, using them as cooks, sex slaves and fighters.

Project Staff Visit Bosnia

vlasic training2As part of the “Strengthening Victims’ Access to Justice in Bosnia” project, Susana SaCouto, Director of the War Crimes Research Office, and Chante Lasco, Jurisprudence Collections Coordinator, traveled to Bosnia for a week of trainings and outreach in October. Ms. SaCouto and Ms. Lasco helped provide a two-day training in Vlasic, Bosnia, for prosecutors, judges, victim/witness support staff, NGOs that work with victims, media personnel, and law enforcement from four different cantons outside of Sarajevo. The training was provided in partnership with Medica Zenica, a Bosnian NGO that has been assisting victims of conflict-related sexual violence for the past 20 years. Ms. SaCouto and Ms. Lasco's presentations focused on the use of jurisprudence in deciding cases involving conflict-related sexual violence. Ms. SaCouto and Ms. Lasco also met with State Prosecutors in Sarajevo and Ms. SaCouto gave a presentation to Judges from the State Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina War Crimes Section and their legal officers. Students from the University of Sarajevo Faculty of Law also met with Ms. SaCouto and Ms. Lasco to begin their involvement in the project, which will include accessing and coding verdicts from the State Court War Crimes Section and cantonal and district courts for inclusion in the Gender Jurisprudence Collections (  These activities are a key component of the “Strengthening Victims’ Access to Justice in Bosnia” project which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and aims to support the effective prosecution of conflict-related sexual and gender-based violence by providing tools and training to stakeholders throughout Bosnia.

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