AMERICA/COLOMBIA - First study on hidden child victims of sexual abuse

Monday, 31 March 2014

Bogota (Agenzia Fides) - Every day at least thirty children and adolescents suffer sexual assault by members of armed groups involved in the internal conflict that has been going on for over half a century in Colombia. With the campaign "Saquen mi Cuerpo de la guerra", the first study on sexual violence against children under 18 years of age was published and so far has claimed the lives of over 200 thousand victims. According to information sent to Fides Agency, between 2008 and 2012 at least 48 915 cases of minors who were victims of abuse were registered: this is what is stated in the report titled "stop chasing girls and boys", developed by different organizations for the protection of human rights, coordinated by Oxfam International. The study also reports a high degree of impunity of the Colombian judicial system against the perpetrators. According to research, sexual assault against children and adolescents is an invisible phenomenon in a Country where many cases go unreported for fear, and for the difficulty to initiate criminal proceedings against the perpetrators. (AP) (31/03/2014 Agenzia Fides)