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AIDS Group Says Zimbabwe Using Rape As a Tool of Terror

The Zimbabwe government's youth militia use the most horrific tactic — rape — as a tool to terrorize those suspected of sympathizing with the opposition. President Robert Mugabe's ruling party has been carrying out a campaign of political terror since opposition supporters contested his election.

Today's New York Times paints a graphic picture of how many of Zimbabwe's women have been abused, humiliated, and raped, often in front of their families. State hospitals have turned away rape victims, who are often in pain and bleeding, and looking to prevent pregnancy, HIV, or other STDs.

To find out how an upcoming power-sharing deal might mean the perpetrators never see justice,


The advocacy group AIDS-Free World hopes that laboratory and photographic evidence of all these atrocities, along with documentation of the victims' stories, will help make a strong legal case in a potential war crimes trail down the road . . . if there is a trial.

Mugabe's party and the opposition are rumored to sign a power-sharing deal this weekend. Some believe that Mugabe's party will not agree to the deal unless it includes immunity from international justice. Should the deal include immunity from such atrocities like rape for political gains, if it means the violence will end sooner?


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