Into The Mainstream: Addressing Sexual Violence against Men and Boys in Conflict

A briefing paper prepared for the workshop held at the Overseas Development Institute, London, 14 May 2014 This briefing paper provides an overview of existing and new research on the reality of sexual violence against men and boys in conflict situations, highlights the importance of the Rome Statute's definition of sexual violence in enabling comprehensive responses to people of all genders, and emphasises the humanitarian principles which should inform responses.
Download this Briefing Paper

Dear Friends and Colleagues of the Refugee Law Project,

We are pleased to share with you our latest contribution to the growing discussion about sexual violence against men and boys in conflict situations. The Briefing Paper, Into the Mainstream: Addressing Sexual Violence Against Men & Boys in Conflict, was co-sponsored by RLP, Plan UK and War Child UK

The paper was prepared by RLP Director, Dr Chris Dolan during his sabbatical at the Liu Institute for Global Issues, University of British Columbia, and formed the basis of a high-level workshop held at the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) in London, 14 May 2014.

The event, which was sponsored by the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, laid some of the ground-work for the experts panel on missing populations in SGBV work, to be held at the Global Summit on Ending Sexual Violence being held in London from 10-13 June 2014. In this workshop, Refugee Law Project’s documentary title They Slept with Me was screened and 2 male survivors joined the discussion from British Embassy in Kampala via teleconference. In the same afternoon, Dr Chris Dolan, Director RLP was invited by BBC World Service Newshour to discuss on sexual violence against men and boys where a male survivor was also interviewed on phone.

On Thursday 15th May, the Metro Newspaper in London, with a readership of 3.5 million across the United Kingdom, published an article referencing our work with men and boys survivors of sexual violence. The article was entitled Angelina Jolie: ‘We need to bring an end to sexual violence in conflict zones’. A similar article was published on the same day by ‘Curious Animal, a global online magazine titled “From the DRC to Bosnia, the raping of men is used as a weapon to destroy ‘enemies’ and weaken opposition, with devastating results.”

This workshop is an important development from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office since the launch of the Prevention of Sexual Violence Initiative (PSVI) by the UK Foreign Secretary and the Special Envoy of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Angelina Jolie in May 10-13 2012 in London, an important milestone that has seen 141 countries endorse the ‘Declaration of Commitment to End Sexual Violence in Conflict’

The Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict will takes place at the ExCel centre in London, UK, from June 10-13. Events at the Summit Fringe (June 10-12), including films, photography exhibitions and panel discussions, are free and open to the public. Should you be attending the Global Summit on Ending Sexual Violence, please do join Refugee Law Project in any of our several sessions in the Fringe events (Tuesday 10th and Thursday 12th), or listen to Dr Chris Dolan's presentation at the Experts Panel on Sexual Violence against Men & Boys on Wednesday 11th from 14.30 - 16.00.

For further information please do not hesitate to contact

  1. Dr Chris Dolan, RLP Director on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or on +447527193772 or
  2. Walter Richard Aliker, Head of Operations and Programme Support and RLP Acting Director on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or on +256776897002

Best wishes

Dr Chris Dolan
Refugee Law Project


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