Soldiers stand trial for rape
18 July 2016
Eleven army officers stand trial accused of raping 14 women from the communities of Manta and Vilca, in Huancavelica, during the period of internal armed conflict. The army officers were stationed at a base there from 1984.
According to digital newspaper La Mula, the Attorney General’s Office considers that the characteristics of this case confirm the existence of a series of systematic crimes and classifies them as crimes against humanity (de lesa humanidad).
Human rights organizations representing the victims, Instituto de Defensa Legal (IDL) and Demus, have also stressed that these cases should not be seen in isolation but as part of a common repressive practice used by the state during the internal armed conflict in the 1980s and 1990s.
This trial provides a gleam of hope for justice and reparation for the more than 5,000 women who for whom cases of rape have been officially registered during this period. The women’s human rights organization, Demus, has begun a campaign called #UnEstadoNoViola as part of the wider campaign #UnHombreNoViola that highlights the prevalence of the machista culture in Peruvian society.
#UnEstadoNoViola stresses the need to end the prevalent impunity that surrounds cases of sexual violence against women. It demands that the Peruvian state guarantees women access to justice.