FIJI: All Suffer When Woman Suffers

Monday, October 11, 2010
Fiji Times
PeaceWomen Consolidated Themes: 
General Women, Peace and Security
Sexual and Gender-Based Violence

TENSION exists in every community but the role of men and women in conflicts must be analysed separately, says a gender and conflict advisor.

Addressing participants at a regional training on eliminating violence against women yesterday, Office of the Commissioner of Human Rights representative Indai Sajor said despite the cause of conflict, the impacts of violence on men and women varied.

"In conflicts where two warring factions come to fight, sometimes men are killed and women are raped. This is an example of the different impacts of violence or conflict on gender," she said.

She said any sexual or other forms of violence, particularly towards women, affected a broader spectrum of people.

"When there is violence against women she is not the only one who suffers. Her family and even community suffers. So when you multiply this in the context of armed conflict situations, it's even harder and the suffering is tremendous," she said.

Participants were informed about the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 which expressed concerns that civilians, particularly women and children, accounted for the vast majority of those adversely affected by armed conflict and recognising the consequent impact this had on durable peace and reconciliation.

Ms Sajor said it was important for governments to look at the whole issue of security and peace and where gender came in.