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Electing to Rape

Zimbabwe's 2008 Elections Featured Systematic Rape

African Governments Should Hold Perpetrators Accountable

December 10, 2009 (Johannesburg) — "The evidence is incontrovertible: Mugabe believes he can sanction rape without fear of consequences. Zimbabwe is perhaps the greatest test for ending impunity,” said Stephen Lewis, co-director of AIDS-Free World.

More than 70 women told their stories for this report. Each account was gripping and horrifying, and we are grateful to the survivors for their courage.

Because of the continuing danger, the identities of the two women in these brief clips have been hidden.

Watch the video interviews with survivors.

Read the Report

Excerpts from the Report


Robert Mugabe is among the world's diabolical masterminds of sexual terror.  He understands gender; he understands rape. He understands impunity. It is time he understood justice.

Excerpts from the Report


Robert Mugabe is among the world's diabolical masterminds of sexual terror.  He understands gender; he understands rape. He understands impunity. It is time he understood justice.

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What if you had to choose between being violently persecuted in your home country, or being an ostracized refugee in a foreign country? What if you had to make this choice after being brutally gang-raped? It seems completely unimaginable, yet this is a reality for women in Zimbabwe.