Islamabad: Child abuse cases on the rise report
ISLAMABAD: Cases of sexual abuse of children in the country increased by about 50 per cent between 2002 and 2006 and the number of women abetting such crimes surged to an alarming level, says a report prepared by a civil society organisation.
During the period, 8,209 children were abused. Of them 74 per cent (5,941) were girls and 26 per cent (2,268) boys, according to the report released by Sahil here on Thursday. In 2002, on an average 1.2 children were abused daily and the figure increased to four per day in 2006.
The report is based on cases reported in newspapers.
Acquaintances comprised the largest group of abusers, followed by male strangers.
In 2002, only five women were involved in cases of child sexual abuse, but the number increased to 351 in 2006.
“The involvement of women abettors needs to be further researched to understand the dynamics that have caused this change as women are traditionally seen as protectors rather than abusers,” said the organisation’s executive director Manizeh Bano.
During the five years, 1,115 girls and 550 boys were gang raped. About 210 victims were murdered after gang rape and 272 after rape or sodomy. According to the report, molestation recorded the second most consistent increase among crimes, after kidnapping.
Children between the ages of 11 and 15 years were the most targeted.
They report says that unlike girls, boys become less vulnerable to the crimes as they grow older. The second most vulnerable group is children between six and 10 years of age.
While almost an equal number of cases of abuse were reported to have taken place in mosques and hotels, the main places of abuse were homes of the abusers or the victims, followed by fields, jungle and streets. Of the cases, 67 per cent were recorded in Punjab, 24 per cent in Sindh, six per cent in federal areas, two per cent in the NWFP and one per cent in Balochistan.
During the period, the number of cases declined in Balochistan and the NWFP. The Chairman of the Senate Functional Committee for Human Rights, S.M. Zafar, who was the chief guest, said the government must come up with a mechanism for recording the cases of child abuse.
He said sexual abuse of children had emerged as a global crime and the Pakistani society must also break the taboo by educating children on protecting themselves and reporting such cases.
The complete article can be found at Dawn News.