UN Secretary General (UNSG), Antonio Guterres
UN SG Comments On Sexual Exploitation, Abuse
By Wilfred Gortor
MONROVIA, March 12 (LINA) – As part of efforts to institute special measures for protection from sexual exploitation and abuse, UN Secretary General (UNSG), Antonio Guterres, wants the rights of victims to be put at the forefront of the fight.
Guterres is also calling for the establishment of great transparency on reporting and investigations in an effort to end impunity for those guilty of sexual exploitation and abuse.
The recommendations from the UNSG were contained in his report released Friday, on Special Measures for Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse.
The report, which is being viewed by Guterres as “A new approach for consideration by the General Assembly,” further recommended the formation of a multi-stakeholder network to support the UN effort to prevent and respond to sexual exploitation as well as the raising and sharing of awareness on best practices to end the scourge.
These recommendations as highlighted in the report are outlines of a victim-centered strategy rooted in transparency, accountability and the assurance of justice.
The report said during his first week in office, Guterres established a diverse High-Level Task Force, to develop a strategy to achieve visible and measurable improvements in the way the Organization prevents and responds to sexual exploitation and abuse.
The report quotes the UNSG as saying, “Such acts of cruelty should never take place, and that persons serving with the United Nations in any capacity should never be associated with such vile and vicious crimes.”
According to the report, Guterres acknowledged that the vast majority of UN troops and personnel serve with pride, dignity and respect for the people they assist and protect, very often in dangerous and difficult conditions and at great personal sacrifice.”
He added that the “Organization continues to grapple with the scourge of sexual exploitation and abuse, despite great efforts over many years to address it.”
The report emphasizes that sexual exploitation and abuse is not exclusive to the peacekeeping forces, but can occur within any organization just as any other part of the United Nations.
The report emphasized that the UNSG's new approach to combat sexual exploitation and abuse also seeks to build a strong partnership with Member States and stamping out this scourge will require all relevant actors to find strength in unity.
Meanwhile the UNSG has called on all parties to deliver on these goals together, adding, “Let us do so in the name of all who look to the UN for life-saving protection and support, and on behalf of the tens of thousands of United Nations personnel around the world who deliver that assistance with courage and commitment to the highest ideals.”