A woman who said she was raped by Somali security personnel was sentenced to one year in prison, United Nations General-Secretary Ban Ki-moon said in a Feb. 5 emailed statement.
The woman was charged with "offending the honor of a state institution," according to the U.N.
Also sent to prison was a journalist, identified as Abdiaziz Abdinur Ibrahim, who was also jailed on an "offending" charge, as well as "filing a false report." The journalist had interviewed the woman, the U.N. said.
The account was confirmed by the Somalia News and Information Center, which refers to itself as the "official website of the Somali government," but which reported that government officials would not comment.
“The Secretary-General urges the Government of Somalia to ensure that all allegations of sexual violence are investigated fully and perpetrators are brought to justice,” a spokesperson for the U.N. said.
“Above all, it is essential that the rights of the alleged victim and the journalist to a fair and transparent judicial process, including the right of appeal, are fully respected,” he said.
The woman said she was raped by armed Somali personnel while living in a camp for internally displaced persons at Mogadishu.
“The United Nations has repeatedly expressed alarm over reports of pervasive sexual violence in IDP camps in and around Mogadishu,” said the statement. “These crimes are underreported because of risks to victims, witnesses and family members, as well as of intense stigmatization. It takes extraordinary courage for survivors to come forward.”