We, the children and youth of South Africa, are disturbed by the increasing number and intensity of conflict situations that have arisen globally and are deeply concerned with the acts of sexual violence that violate human rights during these times of conflict. Therefore, as young leaders, we offer our recommendations to the international community at the start of the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict. Through our deliberations, and having considered the views of the concerned member states of the United Nations, we have concluded the following,
On the issue of international cooperation, we call upon the world’s leaders to:
- Exercise zero tolerance towards perpetrators of sexual violence.
- Diligently uphold existing United Nations Resolutions, such as 1325 and 1820, so as to build upon a coherent international framework for ending sexual violence in conflict.
- Unequivocally promote the inclusion of non-governmental and civil society organisations in post-conflict rehabilitation and policy formulation.
- Ensure that preventing and ending sexual violence in conflict is incorporated into the broader Post-2015 Development Agenda.
- Establish and advance existing international youth platforms to raise awareness and to involve young people in the prevention sexual violence in any instance.
On ensuring accountability for governments in conflict zones, we call upon the world’s leaders to:
- Establish international guidelines outlining punitive measures that governments must adhere to in instances of conflict related sexual crimes.
- Urge the International Criminal Court to coordinate the efforts through its established structures and personnel, ensuring the adherence of governments to preventative and punitive policies.
a. This being achieved through all states being signatories to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.
- Encourage governments to establish independent investigative bodies that will work together with relevant UN agencies, local governments, and civil society organisations.
On the issue of security sector reform in conflict situations, we call upon the world’s leaders to:
- Accelerate, in their respective countries, the transformation of the unbalanced gender margin within the security complex.
a. Through the integration of women in security forces, governmental structures and civil society organisations.
- Ensure that peacekeeping and security forces are more aware of and sensitive to the unique plight of women, men and children in conflict zones.
- Increase security measures within refugee camps; as these continue to be high-risk zones.
Furthermore, we have collectively agreed that:
- The United Nations and countries around the world should create educational awareness campaigns, and suggests a United Nations International Year on the Prevention of Sexual Violence in Conflict.
- Governments should establish youth advisory boards and forums.
- High schools and tertiary institutions should be encouraged to have panel discussions and Model United Nations debates that address ending and preventing sexual violence in conflict.
The 2014 South African Youth Communiqué – On the Prevention of Sexual Violence in Conflict was presented to the British High Commissioner, Mrs Judith Macgregor on 10 June 2014 at the British High Commission, Pretoria, South Africa.
This communiqué is the work of high school learners and university students who participated in the Model United Nations conferences on preventing sexual violence in conflict organised by the South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA) and the British High Commission, Pretoria.
||Johannes Willem Horn
||Mona Lisa Gqwede
||Naledi Thuto Masilo
||Nonkululeko Motheo Lengoasa