International Efforts to End Sexual Violence in Conflict

I just wanted to spread the word about the live blogs going on at Feministe surrounding the upcoming conference gathering people to discuss how to end sexual violence during conflict. The live blogs are being done by Jaclyn Friedman, who edited the fantastic book Yes Means Yes, and will help to document the discussions surround finding strategies to keep girls and women safe, to extend support to survivors, and to build a vision of a future where war doesn’t mean systemic rape.

For those less familiar with this issue, an extreme example is what is currently happening the the Democratic Republic of the Congo, DRC. On May 11, 2011, the New York Times covered a new study about the rate of sexual assault in the Congo that determined that a woman is raped nearly every minute. It is a strategy used by rebels as part of their war effort. It is a disgusting tactic that has disturbing consequences for the girls and women of the Congo. There are constantly new stories about this horrific pattern. However, there needs to be strategies for the survivors to handle their experiences and conferences such as the one being covered by Feministe try to imagine how to locally heal this kind of widespread trauma.

This is an important issue and while it’s not necessarily a part of this blog, I am a feminist blogger and so I thought this would be a useful link for some readers. Click here to check out more information and for the timing of the live blogs.