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ID number:918868
Published: 19.02.2010.
Language: English
Level: College/University
Literature: n/a
References: Used
Table of contents
Nr. Chapter  Page.
  Open conflict phase    1
  Individual level    1
  Community level    2
  State level    3
  Post-conflict phase    3
  Individual level    3
  Community level    4
  State level    4

Open conflict phase
Individual level
As Reimann points out in an open conflict situation on the individual level both men and women participate in war and both men and women can be victims of sexual violence. Rwanda is a case where women were active participants in the war and sexual violence - from high in the chain of command to foot soldiers. The brutal violence could include rape. Many women were victims of sexual violence, prostitution, humiliation, personal or group slavery in and outside Rwanda (which has lasted also after the genocide). The victims were between two and fifty years old, including pregnant women (intersectionality – gender and age). Perpetrators even forced women to kill their children; many were tortured with their genitals mutilated. It is impossible to describe all these in words and perhaps Jonathan Torgovnik’s movie is one of the best which shows the impact rape had on women in Rwanda – 16 stories of women that can not be watched without tears.2 As Cordula Reimann has pointed out: “without taking the gender-specific context of conflict and peace building into account, negotiation processes lack substance and legitimacy and this may jeopardize sustainability”.3 Moreover, the mediator’s task is to raise gender-relevant issues.4 Unfortunately, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda has not managed to use gender-sensitive language: specifications of whose interests, fears and needs are concerned.5 Thus, Tutsi women were violated on multiple levels: as Tutsis, as women, and as Tutsi women (intersectionality – gender and ethnicity). But the same is true also for Tutsi men. An analysis of their experiences and the attendant legal implications requires an understanding of the ways in which their multiple identities situated them within the conflict.6

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