Actress Angelina Jolie will be speaking today at a global summit in London, in an effort to end wartime rape. United Kingdom Foreign Secretary William Hague will host the event alongside Jolie; the summit is expected to bring in government officials, authorities and non-profit representatives from 140 countries.
In preparation for the event, Jolie and Hague spent two years working on their Declaration of Commitment to End Sexual Assault Violence in Conflict campaign. The philanthropists spoke to rape victims and traveled to war zones.
Hague said that a new program to document sexual crimes in war will be introduced that will “set standards for documenting and investigating these crimes, so that...these crimes can’t be committed with impunity.”
Anna Musgrave, of the UK Refugee council is critical of the summit, claiming that not enough is being done for domestic victims of sexual violence.
“One one hand, you’ve got real progress being made in conflict zones overseas, but when those same victims make it to UK shores it’s a completely different story. Women often aren’t believed, and instead of being protected they’re further traumatized by the asylum system. It’s critical that the government tackles this issue with the same gusto at home as it’s doing abroad and protects the survivors of sexual violence,” Musgrave said.
Secretary of State John Kerry offered support for the summit saying, “We will pool our expertise, diplomatic skills and resources toward the common goal of relegating sexual violence to the annals of history where it belongs.”
Publication date: June 11, 2014