About the Database
The main goal of the Research and Database Project (the Database) is to create a comprehensive database which contains International Laws and Domestic Laws of African countries pertaining to sexual violence against the male gender in conflict and post conflict situations. The Database consists of information regarding existing legislation, statutory instruments, decided cases, books and articles on sexual violence in the region of focus. The Database also includes procedures on reporting, investigating and prosecuting sexual violence in the jurisdictions mentioned above; which will be continuously updated in line with recent jurisdictional and legal developments.
The Database aims to create a one-stop research point with information concerning both past and present developments regarding prosecuting sexual violence in International Courts and Tribunals. The Database would reveal existing gaps in legislation and policies and help researchers, as well as policymakers, formulate stronger policies on strengthening legal protection for male victims of sexual violence in conflict and post-conflict situations.
We strongly believe that sufficient resources concerning sexual violence against males will enlighten the international community and allow the stereotypical ideologies as well as the silence surrounding rape of men and other forms of sexual violence to be broken. It would also further unveil the strategies of perpetrators, encourage testimonials and reports, as well as attract more support towards victims.
The Database also consists of a survey form concerning the feedback of the database, as well as the submission of victim testimonials.
The analysis on International Law with regards to sexual violence on male victims will be conducted by including the following sections:
- How has the country been regarded under the light of Humanitarian Law?
- How has the country been regarded under Human Rights Law?
- How has the situation of the country been regarded under the light of International Criminal Law?
Analysis of International and Regional Human Rights Law and International Policy
- Which UN Conventions have addressed the situation of the country? How have UN Conventions addressed the given country?
- What regional instruments have analysed the given country? How have these regional instruments analysed the country’s situation?
- What international policy is applicable to the given country? How has said international policy regarded the country?
International Criminal Law
- Which statutes and founding documents of International Courts and Tribunals with emphasis on definition of rape and sexual violence are applicable to the situation in the country?
- What existing policies on gender are applicable to the situation of the country? How do said policies regard the country?
- Analysis of the cases tried before international tribunals and courts regarding sexual violence, with special focus on sexual violence against males; including judgments of the International Criminal Court, International Criminal Court for the Former Yugoslavia, The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, and The Special Court for Sierra Leone
A legal analysis of the countries concerning the prosecution of sexual violence on the male perspective includes information obtained from Domestic Jurisdiction as well as cases before International Courts and Tribunals.
The research regarding domestic legal situation focuses on the legislation of Criminal Law and Case Law ( Conflict and Post Conflict Situations ).
CODIFIED CRIMINAL LAW:
- Research and interpretation of Penal/Criminal Codes, Penal/Criminal Procedures and relevant laws. The analysis will focus on aspects such as:
- Historical development of the laws on rape and other forms of sexual violence
- Definitions of rape and other forms of sexual violence: whether it is gender specific or gender neutral. Does it protect males and females at an equal level and are the punishments also equal for male and perpetrators?
- Procedures: reporting, investigating and prosecuting
- For male rape and sexual violence against the male gender, what does the existing law on homosexuality say? Does it make provision for identification and protection of potential victims of male to male rape who are not necessarily homosexuals or does it punish both the victim and perpetrator alike. How are victims of homosexual rape identified and protected?
- What are the procedural strategies adopted by the domestic jurisdictions (the country being researched) to encourage and support victims of, and witnesses to, sexual and gender-based violence to bring their cases to court.
- What are the available methods used to protect the identity of victims and witnesses during proceedings. What are the steps taken by the Court to provide courtroom support to victims of sexual violence and their witnesses? (Male and Female)
- Existing evidentiary approaches meant to reduce the re-traumatization of sexual violence victims (Male and Female).
Methods of data collection and sources:
- Previous and current codification of laws and procedures on sexual violence and any other relevant laws
- Scholar articles and opinions on laws regarding sexual violence
- Contact with Legal Representatives of the Embassies located in the Netherlands with a request for available information about current laws and regulations on sexual violence
- Research and interpretation of decided cases before the Domestic Courts regarding sexual violence against men and boys.
Methods of data collection and sources:
- Judgments/ summaries of judgments and opinions in cases on sexual violence against men and boys
- Contact with Legal Representatives of the Embassies located in the Netherlands with a request for available information about such cases
- Contact with legal system professionals in researched country with a request for available information about such cases
- Cases before international Tribunals concerning situations and individuals from researched country
- Note if the country signed and ratified international conventions sexual violence and Rome Statute
- Note if the country participates in regional mechanisms against sexual violence
Sexual violence has significant consequences for the survivors both physical and psychological. It is therefore crucial that the victims have access to adequate health care. The database should include information regarding a health sector in researched countries concerning sexual violence against men and boys both in conflict and post-conflict situations. This section takes the following aspects into account:
- What are the practices in place?
- Are the specific medical procedures available and if not – is the option for resettlement for needed medical treatment available?
- Are there specific manuals, protocols, guidance, communication materials regarding sexual violence against males?
- Mental health – are there specific manuals developed on helping the victims of sexual violence, is the help available?
- Are there any policies, strategies or recommendations directed at recognising and providing health care to male victims of sexual violence; are adequate resources allocated?
- Are there training and courses aiming on sensitizing and educating health care personnel on sexual violence against males?
- What are the attitudes of health care providers towards male survivors of sexual violence?
- Is the privacy and confidentiality ensured for male victims undertaking medical care?
- Are there any referral points for sexual violence survivors?
- What kind of medical information records exist?
The analysis of the perception of both sexual violence against males and male victims themselves in the societies of the researched countries takes the following aspects into account:
- What are the societal/cultural norms and values, gender stereotypes adopted in the country?
- What are the existing stigmas, myths and taboos surrounding sexual violence against males?
- What are the reasons for the victims to be afraid to speak out in the situation of the given country?
- What are the attitudes of members of the society towards male victims of sexual violence? How does that affect the situation of said victims in the given society?
- How is sexual violence against males reported and perceived in mass media?
- Are there specific organizations on sexual violence against males?
- Are the victims afraid to report sexual violence to not be ostracized or isolated, blamed for the situation or because of possible reprisals for real or perceived sexual orientation? What are the elements that bring about this situation?
- What is the level of awareness in the society about sexual violence against males; in conflict situation/ peace situation?
Methods of data collection and sources:
- Interviews, articles, media reports
- Scholar articles, books
CAJPHR has developed a form to “submit a testimony” and has been placed permanently in the database for victims/witnesses that are willing to share their story (with a possibility to do it anonymously). Due care has been given to the fact that the victims/witnesses shall have full right to give or refuse consent for using and sharing their answers.
Besides, testimonials in the form of interviews, videos and documentaries.
The third part of this project will consist of an interactive area that will gather opinions from professionals, scholars and persons interested in the field. The aim is to create a space where :
- Victims can find information regarding prosecution of cases related to sexual violence against the male gender
- Professionals can exchange information and best practices between each other