The civil war in Syria has caused over one million Syrians to flee to bordering countries seeking protection. One of the major causes of this exodus is the reality and fear of sexual violence. Sexual violence against Syrian women is life altering because of the high value the culture places on virtue and modesty; a woman who is known to have been raped faces shame, possible disenfranchisement by her family, and is at high risk for suicide and in some extreme, but few cases, being murdered by a family member in an honor killing. However, once these refugees arrive they are still threatened not only with sexual violence, but also with sexual exploitation. Sexual violence is devastating to women and families. The international community must work to combat it by helping host countries to prevent the violence, assist victims, prosecute perpetrators, and create safe environments for female refugees. Human rights advocates should look within the philosophy of Islam to encourage gender equality ethics already present therein.
- Sexual Violence and Exploitation in Syrian Women Seeking Refuge from Civil War: The Role of the International Community in Providing Safety
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