Officials at the launch of the initiative on Preventing Sexual Violence in conflict. [British Embassy Juba]
By Waakhe Simon Wudu
JUBA, 10 August 2012 [Gurtong] - In a press release, McPhail called for an end to rape and other forms of sexual violence in South Sudan and the entire world.
“Rape and other forms of sexual violence have been used as weapons against women, men and children in conflicts across the world,” he said.
The ambassador did not give figures but said they hear chilling tales of sexual violence in South Sudan.
“In South Sudan we hear chilling tales of sexual violence first hand, reminding us that our action is more important than ever. Across the world, sexual violence is used as a weapon of war. This must stop,” said McPhail.
He said the UK wants to see a significant increase in the number of successful prosecutions for these crimes which he said will erode and eventually demolish the culture of impunity.
He pledged the support of the United Kingdom in fighting the violence by strengthening the ability to gather and preserve evidence, to prevent sexual violence and to support victims.
“We also want to continue to help national governments, civil society and communities to increase the ability of law enforcement agencies, judiciaries, and human rights defenders”.
According to McPhail, they would use Britain’s influence and diplomatic network to rally sustained international action to push the issue of sexual violence on the global agenda.
A Human Rights Officer in the United Nations Mission in South Sudan recently admitted that there is a lot of sexual violence in the new nation but said there are no specific researches done to determine the magnitude of the violence.