Refugees and immigrants transiting Europe women have a higher risk of being victims of sexual abuse, warned the UN Agency for Refugees (UNHCR) and United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in a report released today.
the two UN agencies together the women's refugee Commission conducted a field study in different European countries along which refugees and immigrants and confirmed that women are at high risk of sexual violence.
the three entities said the humanitarian response the United Nations agencies take into account this reality, but warned of little use if the member countries of the European Union (EU) are not aware of it and act accordingly.
"the ability to prevent, identify and respond adequately to this threat lies largely in individual states and UN agencies take responsibility and take appropriate action, "said a statement by the three entities, quoted by EFE.
the text recalls that 55 % of newcomers in January 2016 are women and children and that, despite the low temperatures, the flow of people who reach European shores remains of 2,000 daily.
"While governments have restrictions and reinforce border controls, reception centers and transit can be filled, aggravating the tension and increase the risk for women and children ", warned the text.
the investigation concluded that the current response by government, humanitarian actors, the EU institutions and organizations of civil society is "inadequate and fails to prevent and respond to danger, exploitation and multiple forms of sexual harassment of women and girls who cross Europe."
specifically, UNHCR lamented that reception centers do not apply simple practices such as leaving the light on at night and to separate refugees by sex to prevent incidents.
in addition, the report describes how many women interviewed for the study said they been forced to have sex to "pay" and continue their journey.
"Many women, as they do not want to delay their journey not report abuse or seek medical help," added the document.
Others told they were married "desperation" and to prevent further abuses