· Summit in London ·
The use of sexual violence in war is one of the great injustices of our lifetime. It is hard to document, let alone investigate. Perpetrators do not discriminate, because it’s not about sex, but violence, terror, power and control. When rape is committed during conflict, it has often been seen as an inevitable part of war, and so it has been allowed to go unpunished. But even war has rules. So just as the world could agree that land mines have no place on the battlefield, the world must agree to end sexual violence in conflict.
It will be a
But government action alone is not enough. We need every family, faith and community to change the culture that stigmatises survivors and to be united in their abhorrence for these crimes, so that any man with a gun will think twice before ordering or committing rape. At a special session for representatives of different religions, at which the Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Vincent Nichols will speak, ministers will listen to the personal testimony of courageous men and women from across the global Catholic network – including from the Jesuit Refugee Service, the Caritas Internationalis confederation, missionaries and female religious - who know the harsh realities of this dreadful crime from their work with victims and survivors on the ground from Congo to Bosnia. It would be wonderful if the Holy See could add its powerful voice to the global call for decisive action that affects the most vulnerable people on the planet.
You can join the conversation on twitter @end_svc using #TimeToAct. It is time to support survivors, shatter the culture of impunity and ensure that justice is done, both now and in the future. The global Catholic network has a vital role to play in this common effort, as ethical leader and as indispensable witness. We look forward to your support.
Baker, Ambassador of
St. Peter’s Square
Feb. 8, 2016
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