This note will explore the treatment of the two primary violent sexual acts, rape and forced pregnancy, in modern international criminal law; more specifically in its treatment as genocide. The woman as an individual is the primary sufferer of sexual violence during armed conflict, however sexual violence is a calculated means by which perpetrators seek to destroy an entire ethnic group. Sexual violence is both an attack against the woman and an attack against the ethnic group, and should be prosecuted as such. While crimes against individuals are best prosecuted as crimes against humanity or under domestic law, crimes committed against ethnic groups, separate from the individual underlying act, should be prosecuted as genocide.
Jonathan M. Short,
Sexual Violence as Genocide: The Developing Law of the International Criminal Tribunals and the International Criminal Court,
Mich. J. Race & L.
Available at: https://repository.law.umich.edu/mjrl/vol8/iss2/5