KENYA: Sexual violence continues in IDP camps

KENYA: Sexual violence continues in IDP camps

NAKURU, 4 March 2008 (PlusNews) – Residents in a camp for displaced persons in Nakuru, in Rift Valley Province, western Kenya, were deeply shocked when a gang of men attacked and sexually assaulted five boys, but the health officials dealing with sexual violence during the recent political upheaval have had to become immune.

“Since the violence started we are seeing similar numbers of cases to what we would normally see over the same timespan, but there is one major difference: 90 percent of the cases we are seeing since the political crisis began are gang rapes,” said Lucy Kiama, head of the Gender Violence Recovery Centre at the Nairobi Women’s Hospital. “The gangs range from groups of two men to as many as eleven.”

An estimated 300 women have been treated for rape since the year began, many of them women and girls who had travelled from Rift Valley Province to the capital, Nairobi, often a journey of hundreds of kilometres that could take many hours by bus. Continue reading

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KENYA: Displaced women “still facing threat of sexual violence”

KENYA: Displaced women “still facing threat of sexual violence”


Photo: Allan Gichigi/IRIN
Displaced women and girls are still at risk of gender-based violence, according to a new report

NAIROBI, 10 March 2008 (IRIN) – The risk of rape and sexual abuse remains high for thousands of young girls and women displaced by Kenya’s post-election crisis in January and February, an assessment by three agencies has found.

Detailing the findings of the rapid assessment of gender-based violence (GBV) suffered in camps, the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the Christian Children’s Fund (CCF), said the women had repeatedly expressed fears of sexual violence because of makeshift sleeping arrangements, where men and women were forced to sleep under one tent or out in the open.

“They also voiced concerns about lack of regulations in the camps allowing men from the outside to enter unchecked by camp officials and, in Nairobi in particular, women reported fears about sexual victimisation linked to camp design and services, including lighting, water/sanitation facilities, and availability of firewood,” the agencies stated in a report on 10 March. Continue reading