MOSCOW, October 7 (RIA Novosti) - Canada has pledged $10 million to support measures aimed at confronting sexual violence and other human rights abuses perpetrated by the Islamic State (IS), according to a statement by Canada's Foreign Affairs Department.
"Canada will also continue to provide leadership on the issue of sexual violence as a weapon of war by ensuring that the plight of victims and survivors of ISIL's sexual violence, including crimes against religious minorities, remains at the top of the global agenda," the statement posted on the department's website read.
According to the statement, $5 million will be given to Justice Rapid Response and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, while another $5 million will be directed toward preventing and responding to violence and abuses of sexual character by the IS as well as toward providing relief services to Syrian and Iraqi refugees and displaced persons who have been subjected to violence to brutality by the jihadists.
"ISIL [IS], a self-proclaimed terrorist caliphate, poses a major threat not only to the region, but also to us here in Canada. Canada will not stand by as ISIL commits unspeakable atrocities and crimes against humanity, including the kidnapping, torture and rape of women and children. The systematic use of sexual violence as a weapon of war demands an effective and timely response, which is why we are announcing today a number of additional measures that Canada will take to support the innocent victims of ISIL's brutality and depravity," Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird said in the statement.
The IS, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) or the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), has been fighting the Syrian government since 2012. In June 2014, the group extended its attacks to northern and western Iraq, declaring a caliphate on the territories over which it had control.