Header image for news printout

Comment by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on draft Sexual Intercourse Related Crimes Law in Somalia

GENEVA (10 August 2020) – “Legislation drafted by parliamentarians in Somalia risks legitimizing child marriage, among other alarming practices, and must be prevented from passing into law. Provisions of the Sexual Intercourse Related Crimes Law constitute serious breaches of international human rights norms and standards.

This new draft legislation would represent a serious step backwards for the rights of victims of sexual violence in Somalia, in particular women and girls. It would also send a worrying signal to other States in the region.    

I strongly urge the Somali authorities to swiftly adopt the 2018 Sexual Offenses Bill, unanimously endorsed by the Council of Ministers, and put in place a comprehensive strategy and effective legislation to eliminate practices and harmful gender stereotypes that have a disproportionate negative impact on women and girls.”


For more information and media requests, please contact: Jeremy Laurence - + 41 22 917 9383 / jlaurence@ohchr.org or Liz Throssell- + 41 22 917 9296 / ethrossell@ohchr.org or Marta Hurtado - + 41 22 917 9466 / mhurtado@ohchr.org
Tag and share - Twitter: @UNHumanRights and Facebook: unitednationshumanrights