Source: Star Africa As part of an urgent need to address the high level of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) – including rape, abuse and harassment – experienced by women and girls in the camps for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the Darfur region of Sudan, Darfuri lawyers have implemented projects aimed at promoting and protecting women’s rights in the region.
These projects will be showcased to a panel of international human rights actors, at an International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI) event being held in Nairobi, Kenya, on Thursday.
Working directly with Sudanese legal professionals the IBAHRI, the Darfur Bar Association (DBA) and the Human Rights and Social Justice Research Institute (HRSJ) at the London Metropolitan University, have jointly supported 20 lawyers from Darfur to develop and implement the women’s rights projects, which aim to empower women, inform them of their rights to legal protection, ensure access to justice and end impunity for perpetrators of SGBV. The expert panel, including representation from the British High Commission to Kenya, the European Union Delegation of Sudan, the Ford Foundation and the Open Society Initiative for Eastern Africa, will draw on its wide expertise to provide feedback and recommendations to help the lawyers develop effective and sustainable interventions to promote women’s rights in Darfur.
"In situations of displacement, the risk of human rights violations is gravely heightened. Women and girls are particularly vulnerable to physical and sexual violence. Through the "Women’s rights in Darfur’ programme, Sudanese lawyers are working directly with displaced communities to empower them to monitor violations, take steps to prevent such crimes, and provide access to justice." He added, "The IBAHRI event will provide an important opportunity for the Darfur lawyers to interact with regional and international experts in women’s rights programming, so as to consolidate and build on learnings gained during the programme and develop lasting initiatives to protect and promote the rights of women and girls in Darfur," said Sternford Moyo, IBAHRI co-chair.
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