South Africa warns UN Security Council about violence against women in occupied Western Sahara

New York (United Nations), 19 July 2020 (SPS) – South Africa warned the UN Security Council about the increasing violations of human rights in occupied Palestine and Western Sahara, in particular the hostilities permanently committed against women.

"Conflict situations like in Palestine and Western Sahara, where human rights violations are widespread and where women are affected by hostilities, must not escape our scrutiny," said the South African Minister for International Relations and Cooperation, Naledi Pandor, during a public debate, held Friday by videoconference at the UN Security Council, on "women, peace and security: sexual violence in conflicts."

The South African foreign minister argued that "this will ensure that there is no selectivity or bias in reporting and will maintain the objective credibility of the UN processes."

As Member States, the South African Minister said, “we must mitigate some of the serious negative impacts of sexual violence such as stigma, discrimination, rejection and social exclusion".

"The execution of these activities requires sustainable and predictable funding. Therefore, there should be consistent funding for programs aimed at combating wartime sexual and gender-based violence, including protection of health, easy access to services for victims and survivors of sexual violence such as clinical rape treatment, medical, psychosocial and legal services as well as assistance for the reintegration of victims and survivors,” she added. (SPS)