UN Authority Figures

UN Women, Executive Board: Somalia

Victims of sexual violence in Somalia are continuing to face persecution and social exclusion. It is estimated that around one third of victims of sexual violence in Somalia are children under the age of 18.
Source: The Jerusalem Post, May 6, 2015

Mission of the UN Women: "The main roles of UN Women are: To support inter-governmental bodies, such as the Commission on the Status of Women, in their formulation of policies, global standards and norms; To help Member States to implement these standards, standing ready to provide suitable technical and financial support to those countries that request it, and to forge effective partnerships with civil society; To hold the UN system accountable for its own commitments on gender equality, including regular monitoring of system-wide progress." (UN Women website)

Term of office: 2014-2016

Somalia's Record on women's rights:
"Violence and discrimination against women and girls, including rape and female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C), was widespread... Governmental authorities took minimal steps to prosecute and punish officials who committed abuses, particularly military and police officials accused of committing rape...Government forces, allied militia, men wearing uniforms, and AMISOM troops committed sexual violence, including rape... There are no laws against spousal rape. The UNHCR and UNICEF documented patterns of rape perpetrated with impunity, particularly of displaced women... Women feared reporting rape due to possible reprisals. Police were reluctant to investigate and sometimes asked survivors to do the investigatory work for their own cases. Traditional approaches to dealing with rape tended to ignore the survivor's situation and instead sought resolution or compensation for rape through a negotiation between members of the perpetrator and survivor's clans. Some survivors were forced to marry perpetrators. For the most part, authorities rarely used formal structures to address rape. Survivors suffered from subsequent discrimination based on the attribution of "impurity."...In Somaliland gang rape continued to be a problem in urban areas, primarily perpetrated by youth gangs and male students... F]emale genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) ... was widespread throughout the country. As many as 98 percent of women and girls had undergone FGM/C, and the majority subjected to infibulation, the most severe form of FGM/C." (US State Department's Country Report on Human Rights 2014, Somalia)