The use of sexual violence as a weapon of war
Danuta Reah explains...
Around the time of the civil war in Côte d'Ivoire, I offered a temporary home to a woman asylum seeker with her infant son. She had come to the UK to claim asylum with a rather unlikely story, and had been refused. She was homeless and was facing losing her baby to the care system, and being deported.
I wondered why she told the story she did and as I read about the conditions in Côte d'Ivoire during the war, I began to realise there may be a story she could not bring herself to tell, not to a strange man in a strange country after a disorientating and frightening journey.
Anyone who wants to know the extremes women suffered can read the Human Rights Watch report, My Heart Is Cut.
I opened The Last Room with the story of just such a woman, Nadifa, because I wanted to tell her story to a wider audience. The consequences of what happened to Nadifa underlie the story of The Last Room.
The Last Room was published by Caffeine Nights on 5 June 2014.
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