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Sixteen years ago war was raging in former Yugoslavia and I went to the UN World Conference on Human Rights in Vienna. I was involved in the international campaign to have rape recognised as a war crime, as it was being used as a mass weapon of terror in that war, as it has been in most wars. The previous widespread acceptance that this was just something that automatically happens in war was successfully challenged by a coalition of feminist organisations.

All of the horror of what was happening on Western Europe’s doorstep came flooding back tonight as I listened to From Fact to Fiction on Radio 4, a heart-rending response to Radovan Karadzic’s first appearance at the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia.

And he has of course claimed that he needed more time to prepare his defence and that his fundamental rights have been violated…..


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