Noëlle N.R. Quénivet has constructed a valuable tool for navigating the morass of sexual offences and international law. Using Bosnia-Herzegovina a jumping off point, she proceeds to show how, over the last two decades, the Western world has been swept up by a wave of feminist scholars writing about international law and more particularly humanitarian and human rights law. Although these articles, books and statements have covered a broad range of issues, the focus has been on sexual offences and, more specifically, on rape in times of conflict. These authors, as well as NGOs supporting their ideas, have made a series of assumptions concerning sexual offences in times of armed conflict. On the basis of these presumptions, they have claimed inter alia that international law does not adequately prohibit sexual offences and that prosecution is scarce.
This timely work examines whether the assumptions made by feminist scholars are solidly grounded in international law and whether their claims are still valid regarding the latest legal developments. A thorough examination of the laws and the jurisprudence relating to sexual offences demonstrates that whereas before the creation of the ad hoc international criminal tribunals some of their claims were founded, these claims are now partially ill-founded.
Published under the Transnational Publishers imprint.