Kosovo Backgrounder: Sexual Violence as International Crime

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Acts such as rape, sexual assault, sexual slavery, forced prostitution, forced sterilization, forced abortion, and forced pregnancy may all qualify as crimes under national and international laws. It is possible for an individual perpetrator to be charged under national law with a common crime, such as rape, and also charged under international law for an international crime such as genocide or crimes against humanity, without double jeopardy. Even if the two charges are grounded on the same assault, each requires proof of different elements at trial, particularly on the issue of intent.