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In the Democratic Republic of Congo, rape is regularly used as a weapon of war: it is estimated that 48 women were raped each hour in some regions during the height of the conflict. In Iraq and Syria, where ISIS has seized control over major cities, women and girls – especially those in ethnic and religious minorities – have been raped, enslaved, sold, and tortured. The story is the same in armed conflicts around the world as well as in unstable political climates and post-conflict regions: systematic rape is a favorite weapon of war aimed to control, intimidate, and humiliate millions of women and girls.

While the survivors of violence are stigmatized and blamed, women and women’s groups in places like Congo, Iraq, Nigeria, Burma, and the former Yugoslavia, are defying the odds, organizing to build peace, stability, and respect for women’s rights. Women work fearlessly to support survivors of sexual violence in conflict by advocating for their rights, setting up trauma counseling centers, lobbying to change laws, offering psychological counseling and access to medical care, and shattering the stigma and silence around rape in war.

Share the stories of amazing women working to stop the cycle of violence. Break the silence around rape in war. Add your voice to call for an end to sexual violence in conflict and change the narrative for #unbroken women and girls.

Campaign in depth

Compensation for Croatian survivors of sexual violence in conflict, 20 years after the war

“It’s a long story. It’s a twenty five-year-long story, actually.” As long-time women’s rights activist Nela Pamukovic explains, Croatia’s newest law on sexual violence is long overdue.   On May 29th, 2015, the Croatian parliament passed the first law in the country that recognizes rape as a war crime – the Act on the Rights…

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Immaculee’s Story: Empowering women and girls in the DRC

Immaculee Birhaheka began working with women when she was 23 years old, and she has been focused on women’s groups and initiatives in the Democratic Republic of Congo ever since. Currently, Immaculee is the Executive Director of Global Fund for Women grantee partner Promotion et Appui aux Initiatives Féminines [Promotion and Support to Women’s Initiatives]…

Women’s groups in the DRC are demanding justice

For women and girls in northeastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), rape is a constant threat. Sexual violence has been used as a weapon of war to control, humiliate, and intimidate millions of women and girls since conflict broke out in 1996. A weak functioning government in the area, a breakdown of social norms due…

Woman who survived rape in Congo's conflict learns new job skills. Photo copyright Alison Wright
Three Women in the DRC who are #Unbroken

In the Democratic Republic of Congo, up to half a million Congolese women and girls have been raped by armed soldiers and militants in the war-torn eastern region. Yet while many women are raped by soldiers or vigilantes as a direct result of the conflict, rape has also become much more common outside of conflict…