Throughout this knowledge module, reference to certain provisions or sections of a piece of legislation, part of a legal judgment, or aspect of a practice does not imply that the legislation, judgment, or practice is considered in its entirety to be a good example or a promising practice.

Some of the laws cited herein may contain provisions which authorize the death penalty. In light of the United Nations General Assembly resolutions 62/14963/16865/206, and 67/176 calling for a moratorium on and ultimate abolition of capital punishment, the death penalty should not be included in sentencing provisions for crimes of violence against women and girls.

Other Provisions Related to Domestic Violence LawsResources for Developing Legislation on Domestic Violence
Sexual Harassment in Sport Tools for Drafting Sexual Harassment Laws and Policies
Immigration Provisions Resources for developing legislation on sex trafficking of women and girls
Child Protection Provisions Resources on Forced and Child Marriage
Other provisions related to dowry-related and domestic violence laws
Related Tools

International Instruments addressing specific forms of violence against women

Last edited: December 09, 2010

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Two international instruments address specific forms of violence against women:

  • The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (2002) established the International Criminal Court (ICC) to deal with the most serious crimes of concern to the international community. Its preamble declares that is the duty of every state to exercise its criminal jurisdiction over those responsible for international crimes. In Article 7(g), the Rome Statute identifies rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy, enforced sterilization, or any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity as crimes against humanity when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population. The acts are classified as war crimes under Article 8.

The Rome Statute allows victims to testify (Article 69) and to participate in the proceedings (Article 68(3), and requires the ICC to protect their safety, well-being, interests and privacy (Article 68(1). In so doing, the ICC must have regard for factors such as gender and the nature of the crime, particularly where the crime involves sexual or gender violence or violence against children. (Article 68(1)) The Prosecutor is also required to take appropriate measures to protect victims and witnesses during the investigation and prosecution of such crimes. (Article 68(1)) Article 68(2) provides for measures to facilitate the testimony of victims of sexual violence, such as presentation of evidence by electronic means. Finally, the ICC is to be staffed with people who are knowledgeable about gender-based violence. (Article 43(6))

See:  2011 Gender Report Card on the International Criminal Court, Women’s Initiatives for Gender Justice, 2012; 2010 Gender Report Card on the International Criminal Court, Women’s Initiatives for Gender Justice, 2011.