Tactical Rape in War and ConflictInternational Recognition and Response

Tactical Rape in War and ConflictInternational Recognition and Response

Brenda Fitzpatrick

Print publication date: 2017

ISBN: 9781447326694

Publisher: Policy Press


This book defines the use of rape and sexual violence as deliberate tactics used by state and non-state actors in both intra- and inter-state conflicts. It argues tactical rape is a serious human rights issue, a security threat to women, men, states and the international community. It analyses and tracks progress from tacit acceptance of rape and sexual violence in conflict as inevitable to normative rejection of them as recognised violations of international law. It acknowledges persistent practice of these tactics, ongoing involvement of state actors and serious criticisms of gendered legal and judicial contexts but argues a degree of significant positive change at international criminal tribunals and the United Nations Security Council. It considers the constructed vulnerability of women pre-conflict which increases their vulnerability during and post-conflict and their rights to participate in determining appropriate support, in reconciliation and in peace making. It introduces the main historical facts, theoretical terms and legal developments behind international policies and practices. It identifies negative implications of failing to bring perpetrators to account and proposes responses to ongoing challenges. Powerful testimonies of victims are included, bringing the issue alive and ensuring the human faces of victims and survivors are not lost in theoretical analysis.