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International Humanitarian Law (IHL)

Still a Blind Spot: The Protection of LGBT Persons during Armed Conflict and Other Situations of Violence

Citation:

Margalit, Alon. 2018. "Still a Blind Spot: The Protection of LGBT Persons during Armed Conflict and Other Situations of Violence." International Review of the Red Cross 100 (907-909): 237-65.

Author: Alon Margalit

Abstract:

This article draws attention to the situation of LGBT persons during armed conflict. Subjected to violence and discrimination outside the context of armed conflict, the latter aggravates their vulnerability and exposure to various abuses. Despite important progress made with respect to their protection under human rights law, a similar effort is largely absent from the international humanitarian law discourse. This article accordingly highlights some of the norms and challenges pertaining to the protection of LGBT persons in time of war.

Keywords: International Humanitarian Law, LGBT, sexual orientation, gender identity, armed conflict, protection, discrimination, non-refoulement, sexual violence

Topics: Armed Conflict, Conflict, Gender, International Law, International Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), LGBTQ, Security, Sexuality, Sexual Violence, Violence

Year: 2018

Sexual Exploitation and Abuse by UN Peacekeepers: Towards a Hybrid Solution

Citation:

Mudgway, Cassandra. 2019. Sexual Exploitation and Abuse by UN Peacekeepers: Towards a Hybrid Solution. New York: Routledge.

Author: Cassandra Mudgway

Annotation:

Summary:
Sexual exploitation and abuse by United Nations (UN) peacekeepers is not an isolated or recent problem, but it has been present in almost every peacekeeping operation. A culture of sexual exploitation and abuse is contrary to the UN’s zero-tolerance policy and has been the target of institutional reforms since 2005. Despite this, allegations of sexual abuse continue to emerge, and the reforms have not solved the problem. This book is a response to the continued lack of accountability of UN peacekeepers for sexual exploitation and abuse. Focusing on military contingent members, this book aims to analyse ways in which the UN can fill the accountability gap while taking a feminist perspective and emphasising the needs of victims, their communities, and the host state.
 
This book directly challenges the status quo of relying on troop-contributing countries (TCCs) to hold their peacekeepers to account. It proposes first, the establishment of a series of hybrid courts, and second, a mechanism for dealing with victim rehabilitation and reparation. It addresses these topics by considering international and human rights law and will be of interest to researchers, academics, policymakers, and students with an interest in international criminal law, United Nations peacekeeping, and peace studies.

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, International Law, International Criminal Law, International Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), International Organizations, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Peacekeeping, Sexual Violence, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse

Year: 2019

Digging for Rights: How Can International Human Rights Law Better Protect Indigenous Women from Extractive Industries?

Citation:

Morales, Sarah. 2019. "Digging for Rights: How Can International Human Rights Law Better Protect Indigenous Women from Extractive Industries?" Canadian Journal of Women and the Law 31 (1): 58-90.

Author: Sarah Morales

Abstract:

FRENCH ABSTRACT:
L’expansion des industries extractives dans les territoires des peuples autochtones a été et continue d’être un processus éprouvant pour les gouvernements, l’industrie et les peuples autochtones du monde entier. Bien que les avantages économiques liés au développement des ressources soient substantiels, on donne trop souvent priorité à ces considérations au lieu de voir les effets profonds et durables des répercussions pour les collectivités, sur le plan social et culturel, en particulier pour les nations autochtones. La recherche a démontré que ces répercussions sont aggravées quand les personnes se trouvent à la croisée de plusieurs collectivités, comme c’est le cas pour les femmes autochtones. Dans le présent article, on se demandera si les lois internationales concernant les droits de la personne peuvent ou non protéger efficacement les femmes et les filles autochtones contre les effets négatifs du développement de l’industrie extractive. En réfléchissant au droit à l’autodétermination, tel qu’il est présenté dans la Déclaration des Nations Unies sur les droits des peuples autochtones, l’auteure soutient qu’à notre époque d’extraction croissante, la meilleure façon pour faire en sorte que les lois internationales protègent les droits des femmes autochtones est de prévoir un mécanisme qui rendra opérationnelles les lois et les coutumes autochtones. Pour cela, il faut faire de la place aux femmes autochtones dans les processus de consultation afin qu’elles y partagent leur savoir et qu’elles puissent en influencer réellement le cours. La promotion des droits procéduraux des femmes autochtones est la meilleure façon d’assurer la protection de leurs droits substantiels corolaires.
 
ENGLISH ABSTRACT:
The expansion of extractive industries into the territories of Indigenous peoples has been, and continues to be, a challenging process for governments, industry, and Indigenous peoples all over the world. While the economic benefits of resource development are important, too often these considerations are emphasized at the expense of appreciating the deep and lasting social and cultural effects of these impacts on communities, in particular, Indigenous communities. Research has illustrated that these impacts are compounded when one considers those individuals at the intersection of these communities, such as Indigenous women. This article will examine whether or not international human rights law can effectively protect Indigenous women and girls from the negative effects of extractive industry development. By focusing on the right to self-determination, as captured by the United Nations Declaration on the Right of Indigenous Peoples, it argues that the most effective way international law can work to protect Indigenous women in this period of increased extractive development is by providing a mechanism through which Indigenous laws and practices can be operationalized. This means creating space during consultative processes for Indigenous women to share their knowledge and influence the process in a meaningful way. The promotion of the procedural rights of Indigenous women is the best way to ensure the protection of their correlating substantive rights.

Topics: Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Indigenous, Indigenous Knowledge Systems, International Law, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), International Organizations, Political Economies, Rights, Indigenous Rights

Year: 2019

The Grip of Sexual Violence: Reading UN Security Council Resolutions on Human Security

Citation:

Engle, Karen. 2014. “The Grip of Sexual Violence: Reading UN Security Council Resolutions on Human Security.” In Rethinking Peacekeeping, Gender Equality and Collective Security, edited by Gina Heathcote and Dianne Otto, 23–47. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Author: Karen Engle

Abstract:

The issue I would like to pose in this chapter is about the grip of sexual violence on human security discourse. I do not want to address the violence itself, but to consider why many feminist — and even non-feminist — discussions about human rights and security have become inextricably connected to concerns about sexual violence, primarily but not exclusively against women. I consider here the United Nations (UN) Security Council resolutions on what is termed ‘human security’, and debates and media around them. I do so because I believe they are representative of an escalating emphasis on the horrors of sexual violence more generally within international human rights and humanitarian law, discourse and advocacy.

Topics: Media, International Law, International Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), International Organizations, Security, Human Security, Sexual Violence, Rape, SV against Women

Year: 2014

Women, PMSCs and International Law: Gender and Private Force

Citation:

Vrdoljak, Ana F. 2015. “Women, PMSCs and International Law: Gender and Private Force.” In Gender and Private Security in Global Politics, edited by Maya Eichler, 187-207. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Author: Ana F. Vrdoljak

Abstract:

The application of international law norms and shortcomings of existing regulatory regimes covering PMSCs reinforce concerns about transparency and accountability in respect of gender-related violence, harassment, and discrimination. This chapter focuses on the main issues and legal concerns raised by the impact of the privatization of war on women. The first part examines current initiatives at the international level to provide a regulatory framework for PMSCs and encompasses the obligations of states (and international organizations) in respect of international humanitarian law, human rights law, and use of force. The second part outlines the influence of civil society participation (including feminist academics, women’s NGOs, and so forth) in breaking the “silence” within international organizations and international law concerning violence against women and girls and its potential influence upon the regulation of PMSCs.

Keywords: women, private military and security companies, international law, human rights law, International Humanitarian Law, United Nations, PMSCs

Topics: Civil Society, Gender-Based Violence, International Law, International Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), International Organizations, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Privatization, Violence

Year: 2015

Women and Private Military and Security Companies

Citation:

Vrdoljak, Ana F. 2010. “Women and Private Military and Security Companies.” In War By Contract: Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law and the Regulation of Private Military and Security Companies, edited by Francesco Francioni and Natalino Ronzitti, 1-25. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Author: Ana F. Vrdoljack

Abstract:

Lack of clarity about the application of international law norms and inadequacies of existing regulatory regimes covering private military and security companies have reinforced concerns about transparency and accountability in respect of gender-related violence, harassment and discrimination. This chapter focuses on the main issues and legal concerns raised by the impact of the privatisation of war on women, both as PMSC employees and civilians. Part I highlights how armed conflict, civil unrest, occupation and transition have a detrimental effect upon the lives of women with particular reference to safety, displacement, health and economic disadvantage. Part II provides a summary of existing international humanitarian law and human rights provisions relating to women. Part III examines recent developments within the United Nations, the work of the ICRC, and international criminal law jurisprudence shaping these legal norms. Part IV considers the key recommendations of recent international and international initiatives covering PMSCs and women.

Keywords: women, private military and security companies, gender, sexual assault, forced prostitution, human trafficking, sexual harassment, discrimination, international law, International Humanitarian Law, human rights

Topics: Armed Conflict, Occupation, Displacement & Migration, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Health, International Law, International Criminal Law, International Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), International Organizations, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Privatization, Rights, Human Rights, Violence

Year: 2010

Natural and Man-Made Disasters: The Vulnerability of Women-Headed Households and Children Without Families

Citation:

Sapir, Debarati Guha. 1993. "Natural and Man-Made Disasters: The Vulnerability of Women-Headed Households and Children Without Families." World Health Statistics Quarterly 46 (4): 227-33.

Author: Debarati Guha Sapir

Abstract:

Since 1980, over 2 million people have died as an immediate result of natural and man-made disasters and by 1992, the refugee population registered nearly 16 million people. This article reviews the human impact of disasters as a composite of two elements: the catastrophic event itself and the vulnerability of people. It also examines the specific case of women and children in the current world emergency context. It identifies four broad policy areas that affect women and children in disaster situations and discusses them with examples and field evidence. The first policy area addresses humanitarian assistance and armed conflicts, and armed conflict and international humanitarian law, the use of food as instrument of war, mines and civilian disability, and rape and sexual violence are discussed within this context. The second problem discussed is the issue of unaccompanied and abandoned children in terms of its magnitude and implications for relief response. Thirdly, the article examines the differential risks in emergencies for mortality and morbidity, specifically for women and children. Finally, it addresses certain policies and approaches to disaster rehabilitation which effectively mirror and reinforce inherent inequities in the affected society. The article notes that: (i) the largest proportion of disaster victims today arise from civil strife and food crises and that the majority of those killed, wounded and permanently disabled are women and children; and (ii) the ability of any country to respond effectively to disasters depends on the strength of its health and social infrastructure, and its overall developmental status. It concludes by identifying seven areas where concrete measures could be taken to improve the current situation.

Topics: Age, Youth, Armed Conflict, Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Environment, Environmental Disasters, Gender, Women, Girls, Boys, International Law, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), Humanitarian Assistance, Post-Conflict, Sexual Violence, Rape, SV against Women

Year: 1993

Armed Conflict and Sexual Violence Against Women: An Inevitable Accompaniment?

Citation:

Gökalp Kutlu, Ayşegül. 2014. “Armed Conflicts and Sexual Violence Against Women: An Inevitable Accompaniment?” Kosbed 28: 1–20.

Author: Ayşegül Gökalp Kutlu

Abstract:

Violence against women – rape and all kinds of sexual assault – during armed conflicts is a practice which was known but ignored by human rights discourse and humanitarian law for many years. When states and ideals legitimize killing and other acts of violence, rape is seen as an unfortunate by-product. Therefore, it is common to think about sexual violence against women in armed conflicts as “coincidental”. However, normalizing rape and sexual assault contains the risk of permitting sexual violence and legitimizing its use as a weapon of war. This article will analyse the development and mechanisms of International Humanitarian Law, which is also known for the law of war, with a feminist perspective. It will be argued that International Humanitarian Law lacks effective measures to counter sexual violence.

Keywords: feminism, International Humanitarian Law, sexual violence

Topics: Armed Conflict, Feminisms, Gender, Women, International Law, International Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights, Sexual Violence, SV against Women

Year: 2014

The Dialogue of Difference: Gender Perspectives on International Humanitarian Law

Citation:

Durham, Helen, and Katie O’Byrne. 2010. “The Dialogue of Difference: Gender Perspectives on International Humanitarian Law.” International Review of the Red Cross 92 (877): 31–52.

Authors: Helen Durham, Katie O'Byrne

Abstract:

This article examines the meaning and potential usefulness of a 'gender perspective' on international humanitarian law (IHL). In order to do so, it considers a number of 'gendered' themes found within IHL, including the role of women as combatants, and the gendered use of sexual violence during times of armed conflict. The authors suggest that further development and understanding of a gender perspective will contribute to the resilience and effectiveness of IHL as a system of law, and will strengthen the protection of those who are victimized and disempowered during times of war.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Female Combatants, Gender, Gender Analysis, International Law, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), Sexual Violence

Year: 2010

The Nairobi Declaration: Redefining Reparation for Women Victims of Sexual Violence

Citation:

Couillard, Valérie. 2007. “The Nairobi Declaration: Redefining Reparation for Women Victims of Sexual Violence.” International Journal of Transitional Justice 1 (3): 444–53. doi:10.1093/ijtj/ijm030.

Author: Valérie Couillard

Abstract:

This paper explores the contribution of the Nairobi Declaration on the Right of Women and Girls to a Remedy and Reparation to the problem of delivering justice through reparation programmes for women victims of sexual violence in conflict situations. It highlights that this civil society initiative is particularly significant because it gives voice to women and girls who are survivors of sexual violence. Placed in the context of the recent adoption by the United Nations' General Assembly of the Basic Principles and Guidelines on the Right to a Remedy and Reparation for Victims of Gross Violations of International Human Rights Law and Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law, the Nairobi Declaration redefines reparation and guides policy-making to implement the right to reparation specifically for victims of sexual violence. The concept of reparation as a transformative and participative process put forward in the Nairobi Declaration constitutes its most innovative and inspiring contribution.

Topics: Civil Society, Gender, Women, International Law, International Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law (IHL), Justice, Reparations, Sexual Violence, SV against Women Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Kenya

Year: 2007

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