DCI-Somalia position statement on the proposed "Sexual intercourse Related Crimes Bill"

Picture from the Child Rights Award, DCI, 2019.
Picture from the Child Rights Award, DCI, 2019.

 

DCI-Somalia urges the Somali parliament to consider immediately withdrawing the “Sexual intercourse Related Crimes Bill” as this represents retrogressive legislation and to instead bring forward laws that give more and better protection to girls and women such as the proposed Sexual Offences Bill from 2018 which was the result of a five-year process in collaboration with the United Nations, civil society and women themselves

If enacted, this bill would represent a major setback in the fight against sexual violence in Somalia and globally. Already, Somalia has the tenth highest prevalence rate of child marriage in the world. According to UN figures, 45% of girls are married before they turn 18, whilst 98% have undergone female genital mutilation (FGM). Moreover, this bill would undermine efforts carried out over the past years to ensure greater protection for women and girls. Earlier on August 10th, 2020, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet called  the Somali authorities to enact the 2018 Sexual Offenses Bill and to eliminate gender stereotypes and harmful practices that disproportionately negative impact on women and girls. Finally, it may send a worrying signal for other states in the region. Please click here to read the full DCI-SOMALIA STATEMENT.