Liberia: No Justice for Victims of Mass Rape

Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights and girls remain vulnerable to attack because of the vast numbers living in camps for displaced people, but the international community has made no commitment to support investigations into war crimes committed during the civil war, and has not fully honoured pledges of money for reconstruction made earlier this year.

In the report, ‘Liberia: No impunity for rape - a crime against humanity and a war crime’, Amnesty International describes, through harrowing testimonies, the sexual violence which is believed to have affected around two thirds of the population.

The report also shows the physical, psychological and social consequences of such violence, and provides evidence that sexual assaults were committed by combatants of all three parties to the conflict: the former government of Liberia, the Liberians United for Reconciliation, and Democracy and the Movement for Democracy in Liberia.

A 29-year-old woman from Bomi County told Amnesty International: 'I was pregnant and running away from the camp near St. Paul bridge. Three government soldiers caught me and raped me. They beat me and my unborn baby died. All my belongings were stolen.'

Amnesty International UK Media Director Mike Blakemore said: 'Thousands of Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights and girls have suffered rape and other forms of sexual violence, yet, more than a year on from the signing of a peace agreement, no one has been prosecuted and it remains unclear if, how and when those responsible will ever face justice.

'This impunity is a disgraceful betrayal of the victims of vicious human rights violations. Lasting peace will not be achieved in Liberia unless those responsible for these crimes are held criminally responsible, truth is established and victims obtain full reparations.'

The National Transitional Government of Liberia currently has no policy to bring to justice the perpetrators of crimes under international law. Neither has there been any expression of resolute commitment by the international community to end impunity for such crimes in Liberia.

Mike Blakemore continued: 'A long-term action plan to restore justice and the rule of law must be developed and implemented. This must be a priority for the government, working in cooperation with the United Nations and the wider international community and non-governmental organisations.

'Donor government must honour fully the pledges made at the International Reconstruction Conference on Liberia in February this year – so far around half the funds promised have still not been made available.'

For a copy of the report visit http://web.amnesty.org/library/index/engafr340172004

View latest press releases