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Women’s Bodies as Targets for Aggression: Gender-Based Violence in Israel-Hamas War

Middle East & North Africa, Recent News

Women’s Bodies as Targets for Aggression

Statement on Gender-Based Violence in Israel-Hamas War

Global Rights for Women demands an end to patriarchal supremacy that perpetuates conflict and inequality through violent aggression and war. The women of the world, all of them, need all of us to continue to advocate for global change that recognizes the human right to live free from violence. 

Immediately after the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7, we knew that women and girls would be subjected to gender-based violence in Israel and Gaza. It is what happens during disasters of all kinds when women become more vulnerable. During war, violence against women and girls is targeted and particularly vicious. 

As reports have finally come to light, we learned Hamas had inflicted extreme levels of horror on Israeli women and girls. Investigators are finding evidence of rape, brutality and gendered mutilation. These are atrocious war crimes, and we demand the perpetrators be held accountable in international courts of law.

This isn’t the first time women’s bodies have been targets for misogynistic aggression, and most often these crimes are carried out with impunity – just as in so-called ‘peacetime.’  We only have to look to the past year to see the same things happening in Ukraine, Sudan, and Ethiopia. Or the recent past in Bosnia, Congo and Rwanda.

As human rights defenders focused on ending violence against women and girls, we believe that gender-based violence as a way to exact revenge must be condemned no matter what anyone’s perspective is regarding the grievances and rights of the combatants.  

Global Rights for Women’s work is to support front-line advocates by changing the conditions for survivors, and demanding global accountability for crimes perpetrated against women and girls.  Join us in recognizing that violence against women and girls is a pandemic that persists with utter impunity. We need to end the global calamity of gender-based violence in all its forms.

In action and solidarity,

The Staff at Global Rights for Women