Accountability

Ban Ki-Moon urges UN members to prosecute peacekeepers accused of rape

The United Nations has called on member states to start prosecuting peacekeepers accused of rape and sexual exploitation. (ASHRAF SHAZLY/AFP/Getty Images)

The United Nations secretary general, Ban Ki-Moon has called on his member states to stop protecting and start prosecuting their peacekeepers who have been accused of rape and sexual exploitation. The UN has been plagued with scandals involving sexual assault (often including children) by its peacekeepers for more than two decades, and has been criticized for failing to address the issue. Ban said the UN has been limited by their member states’ governments in its ability to respond, which is why he has now called on the countries to show more “institutional responsibility” in prosecuting those cases. “I have been talking to the leaders of those countries concerned to make sure that they’ll be punished in accordance with national laws. We are very seriously discussing how to handle this matter.” he told The Guardian. “There is a growing awareness among the member states that they should be more practical and cooperate fully with the [UN] secretariat.” The UN has already begun withholding payments to countries who haven’t acted on allegations of abuse by their peacekeepers, but refuses to name which nations.

Read the full story at The Guardian.

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