Haiti: Sexual violence against women increasing
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Women and girls living in Haiti's makeshift camps face an increasing risk of rape and sexual violence, Amnesty International said in a new report released today.
One year after the earthquake which killed 230,000 people and injured 300,000, more than one million people still live in appalling conditions in tent cities in the capital Port-au-Prince and in the south of Haiti, where women are at serious risk of sexual attacks. Those responsible are predominately armed men who roam the camps after dark.
More than 250 cases of rape in several camps were reported in the first 150 days after January's earthquake, according to data cited in the Amnesty International report, Aftershocks: Women speak out against sexual violence in Haiti's camps.
One year on, rape survivors continue to arrive at the office of a local women's support group almost every other day.
"Women, already struggling to come to terms with losing their loved ones, homes and livelihoods in the earthquake, now face the additional trauma of living under the constant threat of sexual attack," said Gerardo Ducos, Amnesty International's Haiti researcher.
"For the prevalence of sexual violence to end, the incoming government must ensure that the protection of women and girls in the camps is a priority. This has so far been largely ignored in the response to the wider humanitarian crisis."
Sources: Amnesty International
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