Kelly Askin: Rape as a Weapon of War

Date of Lecture: February 26, 2013

Kelly AskinAbout the Speaker: Kelly Askin is senior legal officer specializing in international justice and humanitarian law at the Open Society Justice Initiative. She has spent the last 15 years as a legal consultant for international war crime tribunals set up in the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, East Timor, Sierra Leone and Cambodia. She worked to establish a mobile gender justice court in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. A former Fulbright New Century Scholar on the Global Empowerment of Women, she is the author of "War Crimes Against Women: Prosecution in International War Crimes Tribunals" and the three-volume treatise "Women and International Human Rights Law."

About the Talk: Kelly Askin reviews the historical treatment of rape as a weapon of war and details the progress made in the last 20 years to establish rape and sexual violence as crimes against humanity and prosecute perpetrators in international war crime tribunals. She also identifies reasons for the low rate of convictions, including shame and stigma among the survivors, and stresses much work still needs to be done to change attitudes and hold war criminals accountable.

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