An average of 27 children were sexually assaulted per day during the 2008-2012 period of Colombia’s armed conflict, national media reported on Tuesday.
The four-year period saw a total of 48,915 underage victims of rape, according to statistics from Colombian newspaper El Tiempo that were to be presented on Wednesday as part of the “Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict” taking place in London to eliminate sexual violence as an instrument of war.
Most cases of abuse were recorded in the states of Antioquia, Valle de Cauca, Nariño, and Santander, as well as Colombia’s capital city, Bogota, which combined to account for 56% of all cases, reported Bucaramanga’s Vanguardia newspaper.
The risk of sexual assault is highest in rural areas, given there is less access to information and a lack of government services. Likewise, incidences of violence vary depending on which illegal groups are present in any given territory, reported El Tiempo.
Unregistered, but nonetheless persistent incidences of sexual violence are allegedly prevalent in the Amazon region of Colombia as well.
There are also concerns surrounding victims’ willingness to report abuses. Conditions affecting this reportedly include the presence of armed groups in the area, long processes burdened by bureaucracy, inadequate treatment for victims, and inadequate government presence in the areas of conflict.
According to the British government’s website, the “Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict” is “the largest gathering ever brought together on the subject, with a view to creating irreversible momentum against sexual violence in conflict and practical action that impacts those on the ground.”
The summit kicked-off on Tuesday with three days of free public events taking place in London, England.
- A diario, 27 menores fueron agredidos sexualmente durante el conflicto (El Tiempo)
- A diario 27 menores son agredidos sexualmente en Colombia (Vanguardia)
- Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict (British Government)