288: Resolution Condemning the Perpetrators of Sexual Assault and Violence in the Arab Republic of Egypt

    The African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the Commission), meeting at its 16th Extraordinary Session held from 20 to 29 July 2014 in Kigali, Rwanda;

    Recalling its mandate to promote and protect human and peoples’ rights in Africa under the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the African Charter);

    Recalling the obligations of the Arab Republic of Egypt under the African Charter and other regional and international human rights instruments;

    Recalling its resolutions ACHPR/Res.111 (XXXXII) 07 on the right to reparation for women and girls victims of sexual violence and ACHPR/Res.283 (LV) 2014 on the situation of women and children in armed conflict;

    Mindful of its Principles and Guidelines on the Right to a Fair Trial and Legal Assistance in Africa;

    Concerned by the persistent and widespread sexual violence and other forms of gender-based violence committed since the 2011 uprising against women in general and in particular women exercising their right to demonstrate in accordance with Article 11 of the African Charter;

    Further concerned by the impunity enjoyed by the perpetrators of sexual violence and other violations of the rights of women in Egypt;

    The Commission:

    Condemns the ongoing acts of sexual violence and other forms of gender-based violence committed against hundreds of women while exercising their rights;

    Welcomes the adoption, on 5 June 2014, of Decree No. 50 of 2014 to combat sexual harassment in Egypt;

    Welcomes the ruling of 16 July 2014 by the Cairo court against nine (9) individuals, including seven (7) life imprisonment sentences against the perpetrators of sexual assault committed against several women during the assembly at the Tahrir Square, Cairo, in January 2013 and June 2014 on the occasion of the celebration of the 2nd anniversary of the 2011 revolution;

    Welcomes with satisfaction this ruling which reflects the commitment of the Egyptian Government to combat sexual assault and violence against women;  

    Encourages the Egyptian authorities to strengthen efforts aimed at ending impunity regarding sexual violence and other forms of gender-based violence by ensuring that the perpetrators of these acts are brought to justice;

    Urges the Government of Egypt to take the necessary measures to facilitate access to national courts for women victims of violence, and guarantee the right to reparation of the victims, including by providing adequate compensation;

    Further urges the Egyptian authorities to provide medical and psychological support to victims of sexual violence and ensure greater protection and safety for women in exercising their right to assembly and peaceful demonstration;

    Calls on the Government of Egypt to take the necessary measures to expedite the ratification and ensure the domestication of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa (the Maputo Protocol);

    Calls on the international community to support the Egyptian authorities in their efforts to combat sexual violence and other forms of gender-based violence.

     

    Adopted at the 16th Extraordinary Session of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights held from 20 to 29 July 2014 in Kigali, Rwanda

     

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