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Committee on Sexual Violence in Conflict to quiz Foreign Office and International Criminal Court officials


The House of Lords Committee on Sexual Violence in Conflict will this week hold evidence sessions with officials of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the International Criminal Court and senior academics.

The evidence sessions start at 3:45pm on Tuesday 1 December, in Committee Room 3 of the House of Lords.

Giving evidence will be:

3:45pm:

  • Paul Williams, Director, Multilateral Policy Directorate, FCO
  • Tom Woodroffe, Head, Office of the Prime Minister's Special Representative on Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict, FCO

4:30pm:

  • Fatou Bensouda, Chief Prosecutor, International Criminal Court (ICC)

5:00pm:

  • Dr Kirsten Campbell, Principle Investigator, Gender of Justice: Prosecution of Sexual Violence in Armed Conflict research project, Goldsmiths, University of London
  • Patricia Sellers, Special Adviser, ICC & Visiting Fellow, University of Oxford
  • Professor Elizabeth Wilmshurst, Distinguished Fellow, International Law, Chatham House

Questions in the first session will include the role of British embassies in implementing the Government's policies on preventing sexual violence in conflict, the participation of women in peace negotiations and peacebuilding and how the FCO will ensure perpetrators of sexual violence in Iraq and Syria are held accountable.

The second session will focus on the challenges associated with investigating and prosecuting sexual violence in conflict, why there have been so few prosecutions for sexual violence at the ICC and whether the UK's Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative (PSVI) has had an impact on the work of the ICC.

The final session will look at the obstacles to prosecutions of sexual violence in conflict under international criminal law and whether further treaty change is required, including a convention on universal jurisdiction is required.

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