Angelina Jolie urges world to not ignore horrors in Syria

By Sarah Harvey

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Special Envoy Angelina Jolie. REUTERS/Umit Bektas.
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Special Envoy Angelina Jolie. REUTERS/Umit Bektas.

Actress Angelina Jolie has urged a “very, very strong response” to terror group ISIS in Syria, telling the Parliament of the United Kingdom the group were using rape as the “centrepoint of their terror”.

The UK’s Daily Mail reported on Jolie’s address to a Lords Committee with the human rights activists telling of the harrowing moment she met Syrian girls, some as young as seven, who had been raped in war zones.

Jolie said jihadist fanatics in the “most aggressive terrorist group in the world” were using sexually motivated attacks as a “very effective weapon”.

She spoke of the horror as something the world had not seen before on such a scale.

Jolie, who is a long-standing campaigner on human rights and has represented the United Nations Commissioner For Refugees as a special envoy, was appearing alongside former UK Foreign Secretary William Hague.

The pair had worked together before, hosting an ‘End Sexual Violence in Conflict’ summit in London in June last year which brought together diplomats, officials and non-profit representatives from more than 100 countries. The summit sought to increase the rights of victims of sexual violence.

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Special Envoy Angelina Jolie attends a news conference as she visits a Syrian and Iraqi refugee camp in the southern Turkish town of Midyat

According to the Daily Mail  Jolie said there was not a country “in and out of conflict” where rape and sexual violence was not a major issue but in Syria it was being used as a “policy”.

“The most aggressive terrorist group in the world today knows what we know, knows that it is a very effective weapon and they are using it as a centrepoint of their terror and their way of destroying communities and families, and attacking and dehumanising.

“This is what is beyond something we have seen before. This is actually put into their policy.

“They are saying “we should do this, this is the right way to build a society, so we tell you to rape”.

“We really have to have a very, very strong response at this time to this particular group on this issue.”



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