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Sexual violence against men, boys often a secret shame of warfare

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
5/16/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Males who are raped in conflict afraid to come forward with their traumas

The rape of men and young boys is a societal taboo that is practiced in prison and wartime. Intended to demoralize and break down the victim, males are afraid to come forward with their stories and suffer untold traumatic psychological problems afterwards. Male rape is practiced widely during wartime, when social structures have collapsed, leaving many defenseless.

Sexual violence against men was reported in 25 countries affected by conflict between the years of 1998 and 2008, according to Refugee Law Project.

Sexual violence against men was reported in 25 countries affected by conflict between the years of 1998 and 2008, according to Refugee Law Project.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
5/16/2014 (3 years ago)

Published in Africa

Keywords: Male rape, Uganda, psychological problems


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Male rape is utilized to destroy lives and tearing communities apart than guns alone.

Sexual abuse against men can take the form of anal and oral rape, genital torture, castration, gang rape, sexual slavery and the forced rape of others.

Starvation takes no vacation --

Feeling ashamed, fearing ostracism, many victims dare not challenge powerful myths about male rape in their cultures, experts say.

A common belief - in many African villages, is that a man who is raped becomes a woman. Another myth perpetrated is that gay men are the victims of rape, and that the only form of sexual violence against men is anal rape.

"The assumptions that underline those myths serve to silence those victims," Chris Dolan, the director of Refugee Law Project says. His organization has produced the study with funding from British charities Plan UK and War Child.

Dolan's briefing paper was presented to academics, policy specialists from humanitarian groups and other experts for discussion in the hopes that it will help provoke a debate on the problem at a high-level summit on ending sexual violence in conflict in London next month.   

Sexual violence against men was reported in 25 countries affected by conflict between the years of 1998 and 2008, according to Refugee Law Project.

Stories from the nations of Libya, Syria, Democratic Republic of Congo and Central African Republic have come forth from witnesses. They have reported seeing male victims in sectarian battles killed and their genitals cut off.

"There is growing evidence but it tends to be anecdotal. What is increasingly clear is that the absence of evidence doesn't mean that there's an absence of incidents," Dolan said.

In a study conducted by the Refugee Law Project and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. researchers screened 447 male refugees, aged 18 and older in a refugee camp in western Uganda last year. It was discovered that 13 percent of them had experienced sexual violence in the previous year alone, and that more than one in three had suffered some form of sexual violence in their lifetimes.

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