Sexual Abuse and Exploitation by UN Peacekeepers are Mostly Underreported

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Report says more than 225 Haitian women had to engage in “transactional sex”  with Members of a U.N. peacekeeping mission for their food and medication needs.  This is a big sign of sexual exploitation that remains underreported in such missions, according to a new report obtained by The Associated Press.

The report, expected to be released this month, says major challenges remain a decade after a groundbreaking U.N. report first tackled the issue.

Findings :

  • One third of alleged sexual abuse involves minors under 18.
  • Average investigation by OIOS, which says it prioritizes cases involving minors or rape, takes more than a year.
  • Assistance to victims is “severely deficient.”
  • Instances of transactional sex would be considered prohibited conduct.

The U.N. prohibits “exchange of money, employment, goods or services for sex,” and it strongly discourages sexual relationships between U.N. staff and people who receive their assistance, saying they are “based on inherently unequal power dynamics” and undermine the world body’s credibility.

“Staff with long mission experience states that was a ‘general view that people should have romantic rights’ and raised the issue of sexuality as a human right,” the report says.

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