Shocking UN Report Reveals 1 in 4 Men Admit to Raping Women for 'Fun' and Because of 'Sexual Entitlement'
As prosecutors fight for death penalty in Delhi fatal rape case, UN study finds disturbing facts about prevalence of sex crimes in Asia.
September 11, 2013 | By Jodie Gummow
A disturbing new report on sexual assault released by the United Nations reveals that one in four men have admitted to raping a woman once in their lives for entertainment, punishment and revenge amongst the top reasons listed, IBT reported.
The study which was published in the British Medical Journal The Lancet and conducted by the World Health Organization in the Asia-pacific region involved interviewing 10,178 men aged between 18 and 49 years old in Bangladesh, China, Cambodia, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Papua New Guinea about engaging in non-consensual sex.
Almost 75 percent of those interviewed said they committed rape because of "sexual entitlement," or as form of punishment because the man was angry:
"They believed they had the right to have sex with the woman regardless of consent. The second most common motivation reported was to rape as a form of entertainment, so for fun or because they were bored. Perhaps surprisingly, the least common motivation was alcohol," report author Dr. Emma Fulu said.
The study also highlighted, poverty, personal history of violence and victimization as contributing factors that led to rape crimes.
Dr. Michelle Decker of John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore said the findings should generate global outrage particularly in light of recent high profile rape cases such as the New Delhi student gang rape case in India:
"More than half of non-partner rape perpetrators first did so as adolescents, which affirms that young people are a crucial target population for prevention of rape. The challenge now is to turn evidence into action, to create a safer future for the next generation of women and girls," she said in an interview with BBC.
The report comes amidst the news that prosecutors of the four men found guilty of the fatal gang rape of a 23-year-old in New Delhi, India in December say the men should face the death penalty for the crime that shocked the "collective consciousness," of the people, BBC News reported.
In an address to Judge Yogesh Khanna, public prosecutor Dayan Krishnan said on Tuesday that the "sentence which is appropriate is nothing short of death".
In December, the female student was tricked into boarding an out-of-service bus by the men before they violently raped and tortured her. The woman was flown to a Singapore hospital but subsequently died of her internal injuries as a result of the rape.
The incident sparked international outrage and widespread protests across the country calling upon the government to introduce harsher penalties for serious rape cases as well as increasing prison sentences.
Jodie Gummow is a senior fellow and staff writer at AlterNet.