Unspeakable Crimes: Changing the law. Preventing sexual violence against children in conflict – the changes in law that need to happen

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Save the Children

Save the Children’s newly released Policy Brief ‘Unspeakable Crimes: Changing the Law ‘ highlights  specific reforms to protect child survivors and empower them to seek justice. 

While international criminal courts and tribunals have helped to develop international criminal law relating to sexual violence in conflict over the last 20 years, international justice is out of reach for many survivors and there is limited capacity to prosecute offenders.

Strengthening domestic criminal legislation and the capacity of  national justice systems to enable countries to prosecute offenders themselves is, therefore, key to closing the impunity gap and preventing sexual violence.This report reveals some truly shocking laws and legal procedures in countries affected by sexual violence in conflict that make children even more vulnerable to these horrible crimes. But  it also reveals that many countries are taking steps to reform their laws to reduce impunity for sexual violence and to  make it easier for survivors, including children, to access justice.

National legal reform must remain on the international agenda as global efforts to prevent sexual violence in conflict continue to gather pace.

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