The Jurisprudence of Sexual Violence

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Alexa Koenig, Ryan Lincoln, Lauren Groth
Publication Date
May 1, 2011
Publication Type
Working Paper
Conflict, International Criminal Law, International Humanitarian Law, Public Health


This paper provides an overview of the international jurisprudence of sexual violence, focusing on legal milestones realized by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, and the International Criminal Court. This paper also offers a brief, comparative case study of how Kenya and its neighbors are currently adopting and adapting international criminal law to enhance their domestic legal frameworks, to facilitate the prosecution of sexual violence within their borders. This paper is part of a Working Paper Series published by the Sexual Violence and Accountability Project, at the Human Rights Center, University of California, Berkeley Law School. Along with three other Working Papers, it was drafted in preparation for the “Sexual Offences Act Implementation Workshop” to be hosted by the Human Rights Center in Kenya, in May 2011. It will be presented to the cross-sectoral stakeholders tasked with responding to sexual and gender-based violence in Kenya, with a view to framing the jurisprudence of sex crimes in both “domestic” and “international” contexts. We welcome your feedback, which can be sent to