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HOME: International Symposium: Highlights

Highlights from the International Symposium on Sexual Violence in Conflict and Beyond
21-23 June 2006, Brussels, Palais d’Egmont

UNFPA Belgian Development Cooperation EU
Armand De Decker

Belgian Minister of Development Cooperation

Armand De Decker

The militarization of societies is degrading the daily lives of women and children. My main concern today is that this Symposium will lead to proactive decisions that will have a direct benefit to women who are affected by sexual violence.

Veronique De Keyser

Member of European Parliament

Veronique De Keyser

We have to support women who have the courage to stand up and call for peace and justice.

Lieve Fransen

Sexual and Reproductive Health of Human and Social Development Department, European Commission

Lieve Fransen

We hope this Symposium will be a milestone along the road that will lead to equality between men and women and this includes the responsibility to provide protection.

Francoise Duroch

Medecins sans Frontieres

Francoise Duroch

Despite the number of players and the amount of resources to address sexual violence in conflict situations, it is still not possible to provide continuous services.

Dr. Jean Jacques Purusi Sadiki

Human Rights and Protection Adviser, UN Mission in Liberia

Dr. Jean Jacques Purusi Sadiki

If women are excluded, of course there are going to be problems. Since President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf took over we have seen progress with and for women. We now have a very tough law on rape.

Elizabeth Rehn

Independent expert on women, war and peace

Elizabeth Rehn

I hope it is not the warlords who take power after war; it should be the women, the good people, who lead the way forward.

Thoraya Ahmed Obaid

UNFPA Executive Director

Your work and your experiences are critical for justice, peace, reconciliation and the health of people and societies. We want to hear from you about your thoughts and actions so we can better work together to end these violations of human rights and support survivors of gender-based violence.

Marie-Madeleine Kalala

Minister of Human Rights, Democratic Republic of the Congo

The age of victims goes from 4 months to 60 years old. In our national programme to prevent and respond to sexual violence, we take a holistic approach. There is growing awareness among leaders and local communities and silence and shame are breaking down. One of the major constraints is a shortage of resources to cover our needs.

Manuel Carballo

Executive Director of International Centre for Migration and Health

We are here to look for solutions, propose actions and ensure that whatever we do will be practical, evidence-based and sustainable over time. No donor should ever agree to fund relief and development activities today unless there is an inclusion of actions to address sexual violence.

Simon Kankolowgo

Reporter, Director, Cameraman, National Radio and Television for DRC

Simon Kankolowgo

I am so happy to have found a big family of international journalists coming from all corners of the globe. We are sharing our experiences on violence against women, children and also men. I will never forget this experience.

Duska Andric-Ruzici

Medica Zenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Duska Andric-Ruzci

If we want to speak about prevention then we have to speak about male violence against women everyday, everywhere in the world, including in marriage. We need to change mindsets and you cannot do that just by law. That’s what I want the UN to work on—changing thinking and behaviour.

Savithri Wijesekera

Executive Director of Women in Need (Sri Lanka)

Savithis Wijesekera

Sexual violence is an issue of life and death for a woman and a human rights violation. Coming from Asia, women don’t come forward. I hope I’ll find new ways of combating violence against women this week. We need to change and strengthen the criminal justice system.

Superintendent Morris Muligo

Rwanda National Police

Superintendent Morris Muligo
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