On June 10th the UK’s Foreign Secretary, William Hague, will preside over the opening of the first global summit on preventing sexual violence in conflict. Mr. Hague became committed to this agenda after seeing Angelina Jolie’s film The land of Blood and Honey about the horrors of sexual violence that militias and armies perpetrated during the Bosnian conflict of the 1990s. Mr Hague and Ms Jolie joined forces to launch the Prevention of Sexual Violence Initiative (PSVI) in 2012, with a UN Declaration of Commitment to Ending Sexual Violence in Conflict.
Over 151 countries have signed up to the commitment. This week, thousands of activists, government officials and others, mostly women, are streaming into London to contribute to this effort. Mr Hague hopes they will suggest practical actions to improve investigation and prosecution of sexual crimes in wartime, ensure better care for victims, and ultimately end sexual violence in war.