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Safer women, safer world: a fund to increase the number of women UN Peacekeepers and better protect women and girls in conflict situations.
Washington, D.C., Center for Global Development, 2017 Jun. 4 p. (Center for Global Development Brief)Having more women peacekeepers is linked with large reductions in sexual misconduct by peacekeepers and more sustainable peace. The UN could potentially raise the proportion of women peacekeepers to 20 percent for around $75 million. A small multilateral trust fund would offer supplementary payments to troop-contributing countries for each woman peacekeeper provided.
New York, New York, Human Rights Watch, 2008 Apr. 44 p. (1-56432-302-1)Five years into the armed conflict in Sudan's Darfur region, women and girls living in displaced persons camps, towns, and rural areas remain extremely vulnerable to sexual violence. Sexual violence continues to occur throughout the region, both in the context of continuing attacks on civilians, and during periods of relative calm. Those responsible are usually men from the Sudanese security forces, militias, rebel groups, and former rebel groups, who target women and girls predominantly (but not exclusively) from Fur, Zaghawa, Masalit, Berti, Tunjur, and other non-Arab ethnicities. Survivors of sexual violence in Darfur have no meaningful access to redress. They fear the consequences of reporting their cases to the authorities and lack the resources needed to prosecute their attackers. Police are physically present only in principal towns and government outposts, and they lack the basic tools and political will for responding to sexual violence crimes and conducting investigations. Police frequently fail to register complaints or conduct proper investigations. While some police seem genuinely committed to service, many exhibit an antagonistic and dismissive attitude toward women and girls. These difficulties are exacerbated by the reluctance-and limited ability-of police to investigate crimes committed by soldiers or militia, who often gain effective immunity under laws that protect them from civilian prosecution. (excerpt)
[Geneva, Switzerland], United Nations, Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, 2003. 4 p. (E/CN.4/RES/2003/77)Guided by the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenants on Human Rights and accepted humanitarian rules, as set forth in the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and the Additional Protocols thereto. Reaffirming that all Member States have an obligation to promote and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms and to fulfil the obligations they have freely undertaken under the various international instruments. Recalling that Afghanistan is a party to several international human rights instruments and has obligations to report on their implementation. Recalling also the relevant resolutions and decisions of the Commission on Human Rights, the relevant resolutions and presidential statements of the Security Council, the reports of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict (S/2002/1299) and on women, peace and security (S/2002/1154) and the most recent resolution adopted by the Commission on the Status of Women. (excerpt)
Integration of the human rights of women and the gender perspective. Violence against women. Report of the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences, Yakin Erturk. Addendum. Communications to and from governments.
[Geneva, Switzerland], United Nations, Commission on Human Rights, 2004 Mar 3. 51 p. (E/CN.4/2004/66/Add.1)The Special Rapporteur wishes to inform the Commission that during the period under review she transmitted communications to the Governments of: Angola, Argentina, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, China, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Greece, India, Indonesia, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Israel, Malaysia, Mexico, Nepal, Peru, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, and Uruguay. In addition the Governments of Argentina, Azerbaijan, Bhutan, China, Egypt, Greece, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Israel, Mexico, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey and Uruguay provided the Special Rapporteur with replies on cases and reports submitted during the year under review, whereas the Governments of Australia, China, India, Mexico, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka did so with respect to cases submitted in previous years. This report contains, on a country-by-country basis, summaries of general and individual allegations, as well as urgent appeals transmitted to Governments, and their replies thereto. Observations by the Special Rapporteur have also been included where applicable. The names of some of the victims whose cases are presented in this report have been replaced by initials, in order to respect their privacy and to prevent further revictimization. The full names of all victims have been provided to the Government concerned. (excerpt)
So does it mean that we have the rights? Protecting the human rights of women and girls trafficked for forced prostitution in Kosovo.
London, England, Amnesty International, .  p.Trafficking of women for forced prostitution is an abuse of human rights, not least the right to physical and mental integrity. It violates the rights of women and girls to liberty and security of person, and may even violate their right to life. It exposes women and girls to a series of human rights abuses at the hands of traffickers, and of those who buy their services. It also renders them vulnerable to violations by governments which fail to protect the human rights of trafficked women. Amnesty International considers the trafficking of women for the purposes of forced prostitution to be a widespread and systematic violation of the human rights of women. Since the deployment in July 1999 of an international peacekeeping force (KFOR) and the establishment of the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) civilian administration, Kosovo has become a major destination country for women and girls trafficked into forced prostitution. Women are trafficked into Kosovo predominantly from Moldova, Bulgaria and Ukraine, the majority of them via Serbia. At the same time, increasing numbers of local women and girls are being internally trafficked, and trafficked out of Kosovo. (excerpt)
New York, New York, Human Rights Watch, 2006 Nov. 88 p. (Human Rights Watch Vol 18, No. 14(C))In 1990, the Socialist Republic of Vietnam became the first country in Asia, and the second country in the world, to ratify the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Since the early 1990s the government has taken positive steps to enact legislation and policies to protect the rights of children, especially those deemed vulnerable. But for street children in Hanoi-and likely other major cities as well-Vietnam is falling far short of its obligations under Vietnamese and international law, including the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Between 2003 and 2006, Human Rights Watch received credible reports of serious abuses of street children in Hanoi. Primarily poor children from the countryside who go to Hanoi to find work, street children are routinely and arbitrarily rounded up by police in periodic sweeps. They are sent to two compulsory state "rehabilitation" centers on the outskirts of town, Dong Dau and Ba Vi social protection centers, where they may be detained for periods ranging from two weeks to as much as six months. Social Protection Centers (Trung Tam Bao Tro Xa Hoi in Vietnamese), also known as Social Charity Establishments, Social Support Centers, Social Relief Centers, or Transit Centers, are closed institutions for beggars, homeless adults and children, sex workers, drug addicts, orphans, disabled and elderly people without family support, and street children. In theory, the centers are operated and administered by the Department of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs (DOLISA) together with local People's Committees. In fact, the Ministry of Public Security plays a significant role in their operation. (excerpt)
Protocol to prevent, suppress and punish trafficking in persons, especially women and children, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime.
[New York, New York], United Nations, 2000. 11 p.Declaring that effective action to prevent and combat trafficking in persons, especially women and children, requires a comprehensive international approach in the countries of origin, transit and destination that includes measures to prevent such trafficking, to punish the traffickers and to protect the victims of such trafficking, including by protecting their internationally recognized human rights, Taking into account the fact that, despite the existence of a variety of international instruments containing rules and practical measures to combat the exploitation of persons, especially women and children, there is no universal instrument that addresses all aspects of trafficking in persons, Concerned that, in the absence of such an instrument, persons who are vulnerable to trafficking will not be sufficiently protected, Recalling General Assembly resolution 53/111 of 9 December 1998, in which the Assembly decided to establish an open-ended intergovernmental ad hoc committee for the purpose of elaborating a comprehensive international convention against transnational organized crime and of discussing the elaboration of, inter alia, an international instrument addressing trafficking in women and children, Convinced that supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime with an international instrument for the prevention, suppression and punishment of trafficking in persons, especially women and children, will be useful in preventing and combating that crime. (excerpt)
United Nations Reform: Improving Peace Operations by Advancing the Role of Women. Sponsored by the Stanley Foundation in cooperation with Women in International Security. November 14, 2006 - New York, November 16, 2006 - Washington, DC.
Muscatine, Iowa, Stanley Foundation, 2006. 24 p.In November 2006, over 75 experts gathered in New York and Washington to discuss "United Nations Reform: Improving Peace Operations by Advancing the Role of Women." Convened by the Stanley Foundation and Women in International Security (WIIS), practitioners and policymakers from various United Nations agencies, national governments and militaries, academia, and civil society groups identified barriers to women's advancement and generated concrete ways to improve the recruitment and selection of women for peace operations as heads of mission, military personnel, civilian police, and international and national staff. On numerous occasions, the United Nations has committed itself to achieving 50/50 gender balance throughout the organization. Indeed, understanding of the added value of women's knowledge and experiences is growing within the UN system and beyond, yet implementation of existing mandates is sporadic. Furthermore, the pockets of activity and momentum are rarely connected, as UN agencies, member states, and civil society are frequently operating in parallel structures and forums. The New York and Washington sessions brought diverse actors together to bridge the knowledge gap, maximize efforts, and jointly strategize on next steps to enhance women's numbers and role in peace operations. (excerpt)
Vienna, Austria, United Nations, Office on Drugs and Crime, 2006.  p.The present Toolkit was prepared because there is still much to be learned about what works best to prevent and combat human trafficking under various circumstances. It presents a selection of conceptual, legislative and organizational tools in use in different parts of the world. The Toolkit is based on the premise that the problem of trafficking in persons, whether at the national or local level, can only be addressed effectively on the basis of comprehensive strategies that are based on human rights and that take into account the transnational nature of the problem, the many associated criminal activities, the frequent involvement of organized criminal groups and the profound pain, fear and damage suffered by the victims. Although the Toolkit offers a few examples of comprehensive national strategies, most of the tools that it offers focus on one specific aspect of the comprehensive response required. Individual tools may be used to develop comprehensive strategies, or to augment or strengthen some of the essential components of existing ones. Many of these tools will need to be adapted to national or local circumstances. None of the tools, by itself, is sufficient to provide an effective response to the problem. (excerpt)
Forced Migration Review. 2005 Nov; (24):43.The IRC/UNDP Human Rights and Rule of Law training programme was launched in September 2004 with the support of tribal leaders in Darfur and the endorsement of state and federal authorities. Human rights training courses and workshops have been attended by some 7,000 people. Participants have included military officers, local police officers, lawyers, judges, law students, leaders of women’s organisations and youth groups, IDP camp leaders, municipal officials, prison administrators and the native administration. (excerpt)
WHO background paper: Obstacles to women accessing forensic medical exams in cases of sexual violence.
New York, New York, Human Rights Watch, 2001 Jun 25. 22 p.Despite the success of the women’s human rights movement in highlighting the issue of violence against women, many countries have yet to implement the necessary criminal justice system reform to ensure that, at the very least, wo men can pursue redress through the criminal justice system. This work must happen in the larger context of dismantling de jure and de facto discrimination against women. It is women’s second class status that makes them vulnerable to violence and bars them from receiving effective redress through the criminal justice system. Women’s rights activists all over the world are doing extensive work training police, prosecutors and judges to address pervasive bias and ignorance. A group of professionals largely untouched by this advocacy are doctors or other health professionals responsible for collecting, analyzing and testifying about forensic evidence in cases of sexual and gender based violence. In this paper, we call on the World Health Organization (WHO) to establish minimum standards for the collection of evidence in cases of sexual and domestic violence. We also call on WHO to draft a policy paper to support the effective implementation of the minimum standards. This paper should explore obstacles to the successful implementation of these standards such as discriminatory rules of evidence and procedure; the failure of states to criminalize specific conduct such as marital rape; and, the belief that only virgins can be raped. (excerpt)
New York, New York, Human Rights Watch, 2003 Aug. , 29 p. (Angola Vol. 15, No. 16(A))This short report is based on an investigation by Human Rights Watch conducted in March and April 2003. Our researchers interviewed over fifty internally displaced persons, refugees, and former combatants in the transit centers and the camps of Bengo, Bengo II and Kituma in the province of Uíge and Cazombo in the province of Moxico. Human Rights Watch researchers conducted twenty-one interviews with concerned U.N. agencies, NGOs and other organizations, including the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the U.N. Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the World Food Programme (WFP), Oxfam-GB, GOAL, African Humanitarian Aid (AHA), Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)-Spain, MSF-Belgium, Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS), Lutheran World Federation (LWF), International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank, Trocaire, Associação Justiça, Paz e Democracia (AJPD), Liga da Mulher Angolana (LIMA) and Mulheres, Paz e Desenvolvimento. Human Rights Watch researchers also interviewed Angolan central government officials and police, and conducted six interviews with local Angolan authorities in three provinces. Where necessary, the names of those interviewed are withheld or changed in this short report to protect their confidentiality. (excerpt)
Afghanistan. "Killing you is a very easy thing for us": human rights abuses in southeast Afghanistan.
New York, New York, Human Rights Watch, 2003 Jul. 102 p. (Vol. 15, No. 5(C))This report, based on research conducted from January through June 2003, documents human rights abuses in the southeast of Afghanistan, the most densely populated part of Afghanistan. If allowed to continue with impunity, these abuses will make it impossible for Afghans to create a modern, democratic state. Although many observers have noted the harmful effects of chronic insecurity in Afghanistan, few have sufficiently appreciated the extent to which continuing insecurity, at its heart, is due to policies and depredations of local government actors. Human Rights Watch found evidence of government involvement or complicity in abuses in virtually every district in the southeast. These include the provinces of Kabul, Wardak, Ghazni, Logar, Paktia, Paktika, Laghman, Nangarhar, Kapisa, and Kunar. The three main types of abuse documented in this report are violent criminal offenses—armed robbery, extortion, and kidnappings—committed by army troops, police, and intelligence agents; governmental attacks on media and political actors; and violations of the human rights of women and girls. Many of these violations are preventable, but solutions will require the concerted attention and action of international and Afghan authorities alike, which to date has not been sufficiently forthcoming. The report details specific accounts of the daily abuses suffered by Afghans: farmers in Paghman district in Kabul province staying awake at night in shifts to guard their property from thieving soldiers and police; bus and taxi drivers from Gardez in Paktia province being hijacked or beaten for not paying bribes to soldiers and police; people in Jalalabad being arbitrarily arrested by police or soldiers, accused of bogus crimes or “being a member of the Taliban,” and freed only after they or their family pay a ransom. It documents arbitrary arrests of and death threats against journalists by intelligence agents, police, and army officials, and detentions and intimidation of political opponents by government forces. It explains that many girls in areas such as Ghazni and Paghman are still unable go to school, and why women in areas such as Laghman fear attacks by local armed men if they speak about or promote women’s rights. These abuses are impeding the delivery of humanitarian aid and keeping some refugees and internally displaced persons from returning to their homes. The accumulation of cases, from an array of districts, demonstrates the problem’s pervasiveness and urgency. (excerpt)
Unintended consequences: drug policies fuel the HIV epidemic in Russia and Ukraine. A policy report prepared for the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs and national governments.
New York, New York, Open Society Institute, International Harm Reduction Development program, 2003. 16 p.Taking action now to reduce HIV transmission rates and treat those already infected is critical. With the goal of avoiding adverse effects on social welfare and public health, the Russian and Ukrainian governments should reconsider how they interpret international treaties. Policy changes should be made in the following areas: Harm reduction. The governments should play an active role in establishing and supporting a large, strategically located network of harm reduction programs that provide services for IDUs, including needle exchange, HIV transmission education, condom distribution, and access to viable treatment programs such as methadone substitution. Similar services should be available in all prisons. Education. Simple, direct, and dear information about HIV transmission should be made available to all citizens-especially those most at risk. Similarly, society at large should be educated about the realities of drug use and addiction as part of an effort to reduce stigma. Discrimination and law enforcement abuse. Public health and law enforcement authorities should take the lead in eliminating discrimination, official and de facto, toward people with HIV and marginalized risk groups such as drug users. Authorities must no longer condone or ignore harassing and abusive behavior, including physical attacks, arrest quotas, arbitrary searches, detainment without charges, and other violations of due process. HIV-positive people, including IDUs, should be included in all policy discussions related to them in the public health and legal spheres. Legislation. Laws that violate the human rights of people with HIV and at-risk groups should be repealed or restructured to better reflect public health concerns. Moving forward with the above strategies may make it appear that the governments are backing away from the goals and guidelines of the UN drug conventions. They may be criti- cized severely by those who are unable or unwilling to understand that meeting the goals of the conventions, some of which were promulgated more than 40 years ago, is far too great a price to bear for countries in the midst of drug use and HIV epidemics. Governments ultimately have no choice, though, if they hope to maintain any semblance of moral legitimacy among their own people. (excerpt)