Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) needs to do much more when it comes to exercising the rights of victims of sexual violence, it was said in Sarajevo at a presentation of a program to mark June 19th, International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in War, and 30 Years since the Crime against Women of BiH.
International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in War is marked to raise awareness of the need to end sexual violence as a weapon of war, pay tribute to victims of sexual violence, and thank all those who have dedicated their lives to preventing this type of violence.
Midheta Kaloper, a representative of the Association of War Victims in Foca 1992-1995, said that the association was preparing to mark the event in Foca in front of SD ‘Partizan’, “one of the largest torture chambers in Europe for women.”
She said that the state of BiH had done very little when it came to the surviving women who carried most of the torture during the aggression against BiH on their shoulders.
Kaloper pointed out that so far the state of BiH should have systematically resolved this issue, ie that there is an agency, an institution that will deal with the rights of war survivors.
Furthermore, she stated that the program will start at 11 am on June 19th, with speeches scheduled, after which all raped women in BiH and around the world who survive the worst tortures will be honored on the main square in Foca.
”Rape is, unfortunately, the cheapest weapon, and it leaves the biggest consequences when it comes to the surviving victim,”Kaloper said.
She added that Foca was the site of the greatest systemic sexual violence and rape of women in the war in BiH. Little girls were also raped in Foca, and the youngest was 11 years old.
She also spoke about the torture against men and said that it was difficult for them to talk about it. She encouraged men to talk in order to work together to fight for justice.
Izet Spahic, councilor in the Foca Municipal Assembly, spoke about the attitudes of the local community towards the victims of sexual violence in the war. Spahic said that since the founding of the association, they have been trying to provide support in their fight for justice.
He believes that there is an unsustainable situation and called on higher levels of government and the international community to support their fight.
”We hope that in the future the time to come will yield better results on this topic,” he added, Federalna writes.