Wartime Rape and International Law

4 Pages Posted: 28 Dec 2007

See all articles by Stefan Kirchner

Stefan Kirchner

University of Lapland, Arctic Centre

Date Written: September 19, 2007


Wartime rape continues to be a common phenomenon. While it gained some international attention during the Yugoslav Wars, it is often only seen as one of many problems associated with armed conflict. Rape and other forms of sexual violence in times of war are prohibited by International Humanitarian Law. These prohibitions can be argued to amount even to jus cogens, that is, to rules of international law which take absolute precedence over other rules. Rape is punishable under International Criminal Law but that does not mean that combating wartime rape is the exclusive domain of International Courts and Tribunals. To the contrary. The broad consensus against wartime rape evidenced by the human rights and International Humanitarian Law documents mentioned above indicates that wartime rape, which has affected women around the world for millennia, has finally become everybody's concern.

Keywords: war, law, rape, international, human rights, humanitarian, warfare, combat, women

JEL Classification: K33

Suggested Citation

Kirchner, Stefan, Wartime Rape and International Law (September 19, 2007). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1078919 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1078919

Stefan Kirchner (Contact Author)

University of Lapland, Arctic Centre ( email )

P.O. Box 122
Rovaniemi, Lapland 96101
+358404844001 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.ulapland.fi

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