SYRIA: UAE Condemns Sexual Violence in Syria Conflict

Sunday, April 27, 2014
Khaleej Times
PeaceWomen Consolidated Themes: 
Sexual and Gender-Based Violence

Permanent Representative of the UAE to the United Nations pledges UAE's continued financial and psychological support to affected Syrians in refugee camps.

The UAE has pledged its commitment to support all international efforts and initiatives aimed at finding solutions to ensure the elimination of sexual violence in conflict. Lana Zaki Nusseibeh, Permanent Representative of the UAE to the United Nations, expressed the UAE's “strong condemnation” of the use of sexual violence as a tactic of war in Syria, declaring support for all efforts being made to collect data on these crimes in the pursuit of justice.

She pledged the UAE's continued financial and psychological support to affected Syrians in refugee camps, in order to reintegrate and rehabilitate them.

Nusseibeh announced this in a statement at the open debate of the Security Council on Women and Peace and Security, ‘Sexual violence in conflict', which took place on Friday.

The debate saw the participation of the UN Secretary-General's Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflicts, Zainab Bangura.

Expressing the UAE's “grave concern” over the continued use and spread of this heinous crime, Nusseibeh said, “Sexual violence in conflict is a crime that has harmed far too many people for thousands of years. It knows no boundaries or age limitations, and it is not related to a specific culture or ethnic group.

“This crime is perpetrated without punishment and is used as a tactic of war to destroy the fabric of society and deprive it ... (of) ... the ability to heal and rebuild; it does not target women and girls only, but also men and boys.”

She stressed on the necessity to develop an international response within the context of the relevant Security Council resolutions on this issue.

Nusseibeh reiterated that the UAE welcomes the international protocol on documentation and investigation of sexual violence in conflict, which will be launched during the upcoming summit in London.

This builds upon the successful action-oriented initiatives led by the United Kingdom in tackling this issue. “Such initiatives are strongly supported by ... Shaikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, (UAE) Foreign Minister,” she said.