Statement of congratulations from Pax Christi International to 2018 Nobel Peace Prize recipients Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad


5/10/18 - Brussels—Pax Christi International congratulates Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad, recipients of the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize for their courageous work to end sexual violence against women as a weapon of war and armed conflict. Their heartbreaking witness and their stories about the devastating reality of victims of sexual violence have moved many people around the world, raising greater concern and attention at international policy levels for these grave abuses.

The Nobel Peace Prize Committee has rightly chosen to highlight the widespread phenomenon of sexual violence in situations of war and armed conflict, which is taking place globally and causing severe and damaging consequences for its many victims: women, men, boys and girls, as well as their families and whole communities. Often victims are afraid to speak out and, if they do so, perpetrators are not held accountable, despite sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict constituting a war crime under international criminal law and a violation of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.

Around the world, Pax Christi members and partners are faced with this reality on the ground in their work with communities. Pax Christi International fervently hopes that this Nobel Peace Prize will give the international community stimulus to undertake more decisive action and provide more funding for the prevention of sexual violence in situations of war and armed conflict as well as for the protection, assistance and justice for victims, in line with their commitments at the international level. Furthermore, we hope that actions will be taken to address sexual violence and its root causes in transitional justice and peace processes.

Today is an important day for the victims of sexual violence in situations of war and armed conflicts as their heroic defenders have been honoured with the highest recognition for peace work at the international level. As partners along the path to peace, nonviolence, human rights, and the dignity of victims, our peace movement congratulates the accomplishments of Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad and recognises that their work embodies the spirit of just peace that our current world so badly needs.

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Denis Mukwege, Nadia Murad, Nobel Peace Prize, sexual violence