Violence and Injury Prevention

16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence

Sexual violence and conflict

Fact 10: Sexual violence is widespread in settings of conflict, post-conflict and displacement.

In armed conflicts, the breakdown of social support structures, families, and communities, and the disruption of services leave women and children vulnerable to sexual violence, including rape by combatants and intimate partners, and sexual exploitation by humanitarian actors. Women may submit to sexual abuse to obtain food and other basic life necessities. Rape is used to brutalize and humiliate civilians (including men) as a tactic of war, and at times for ethnic cleansing.