Briefing Note: An overview of avenues for redress for survivors of conflict-related sexual violence (CRSV) in Ukraine

19 Апрель 2023
Briefing Note: An overview of avenues for redress for survivors of conflict-related sexual violence (CRSV) in Ukraine

This EHRAC Briefing Note provides an overview of avenues for redress for survivors of conflict-related sexual violence (CRSV) in Ukraine.

In referring to CRSV, we use the following established definition: “rape, sexual slavery, forced prostitution, forced pregnancy, forced abortion, enforced sterilisation, forced marriage, and any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity perpetrated against women, men, girls, or boys that is directly or indirectly linked to a conflict”.

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The link to a conflict may be evident in the profile of the perpetrator; the profile of the victim; the climate of impunity; cross-border consequences, such as displacement or trafficking; and/or violations of the provisions of a ceasefire agreement.

CRSV also encompasses trafficking in persons (the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons for the purpose of exploitation, including of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, of slavery or slavery-like practices, and other forms of exploitation, when committed in situations of conflict).

Acts of sexual violence can constitute human rights violations, atrocity crimes, such as war crimes, crimes against humanity, or genocidal acts.

The first section discusses available international human rights law mechanisms: (1) the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR); and (2) UN Committees. The second section discusses criminal law proceedings before (1) the International Criminal Court; (2) the domestic courts in Ukraine; and (3) the domestic courts of countries exercising universal jurisdiction.