Women rallied in Omdurman on Wednesday to condemn rape and sexual assault. UN said it had received “disturbing reports” that security force members sexually abused women at demonstrations. The US and European Union said they condemned the use of sexual violence “as a weapon”.
Women rallied in Omdurman on Wednesday to condemn rape and sexual assault against female protesters at a protest on 19th December.
The UN said it had received “disturbing reports” that security force members sexually abused women at the demonstration against the military. The US and other Western powers criticised the use of sexual violence “to drive women away” from protests.
In a joint statement, the US and European Union said they condemned the use of sexual violence “as a weapon” to silence the voices of women.
Pramila Patten, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict, expressed deep concern over credible reports of serious human rights violations, including the use of rape and gang rape of women and girls, to disperse protesters who had attemptedto hold a sit-in close to the Republican Palace.
Voices From The Protesters
Anaam Saleh Ateeq, Protester: “The dirtiest thing is the weapon of rape, the thing which was committed earlier in Darfur, and now is being committed at the heart of Khartoum. We strongly refuse the use of rape as a weapon to break us. We will not be broken. We will continue our struggle. All strugglers will flock to the streets. We will not surrender. We will take legal measures, we actually have already begun to take legal measures to put an end to this bad practice.”
Amal, Protester: “I condemn violence against women, especially women in Darfur, and I appeal to human rights organisations and all those concerned to protect women, because women represent half of society. Society without women is a society without strength.”
Protester: “I am protesting to tell the international community and the (Army Chief Abdel Fattah) Burhan, that women’s bodies are not battlefields. Even if you rape or kill us, we won’t go back. If you want to go back, go ahead and do it, but we won’t go back, we won’t go back.”
The security forces have not yet commented on the allegations.