UN in Somalia calls for enhanced protection of health workers on sexual violence awareness day


MOGADISHU, Somalia (Kaab TV) – On the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict, the United Nations in Somalia emphasized the need for greater protection for healthcare and humanitarian workers who assist survivors of conflict-related sexual violence.

“Women and girls in Somalia continue to be exposed to many forms of sexual violence, especially in areas affected by conflict and insecurity. When health professionals can operate in those areas, they provide much-needed medical care, often risking their own lives,” said James Swan, the UN Secretary-General’s Acting Special Representative for Somalia.

“This year, on 19 June, I pay tribute to the health workers who assist survivors in the aftermath of rape, and other forms of sexual violence, and I call for enhanced protection of all those who dispense critical care to those in need,” Swan added.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), at least ten healthcare workers were injured in attacks by non-state actors on healthcare facilities between 1 January 2023 and 31 May 2024 – a figure believed to be significantly under-reported.

Since 2015, the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict is observed annually on 19 June, marking the Security Council’s recognition of sexual violence as a weapon of war and a threat to international peace and security.

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