Hello, and welcome back to As It Is from VOA Learning English.
I’m Christopher Cruise in Washington.
Today on the program, our East Africa Correspondent Gabe Joselow is here with a report on how African men are helping stop rape on the continent…
在今天的节目里，我们的东非联络人 Gabe Joselow 向我们讲述非洲男性如何帮助制止该大洲的强奸案。
“The government is giving more support to women who are victims of such crimes. It is also talking with men and to criminals who are seeking to improve their lives. These efforts are happening across Africa.”
But first, we report on the latest efforts to make the rape of a spouse a crime in all of Africa…
“You know, there’s the African thing that your husband can’t rape you. You know, they’ll tell you how can your husband rape you? It’s an entitlement.”
Fighting rape in Africa, the subject of our reports today, as you learn everyday American English with As It Is on VOA.
“Rape is rape” -- Making the Rape of a Spouse a Crime
In about half of African countries south of the Sahara Desert, it is not against the law for a man to force his wife to have sex with him. In at least three countries in the area, laws do not permit women to bring rape charges against their husbands.
在大约半数的撒哈拉以南非洲国家，男子强迫妻子与自己发生性关系是不犯法的。在该地区至少 3 个国家，法律不允许女性对自己丈夫进行强奸指控。
There have been efforts to make spousal, or marital, rape a crime. But they have been debated.
The United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women recognized spousal rape as gender-based violence in 1980. Sub-Saharan African countries have taken several actions to make spousal rape a crime since then.
联合国《消除对妇女一切形式歧视公约》在 1980 年认定婚内强奸是与性别有关的暴力。从此，撒哈拉以南非洲国家开始采取了一些给婚内强奸定罪的举措。
South Africa was one of the first to take action. In 1993, legislators changed a law that said a man could not be charged with raping his wife. The new law stated that “a husband may be convicted of the rape of his wife.”
Since then, almost 20 other African countries have taken similar steps. But Nigeria, Ethiopia and Kenya are not among them. The laws in those countries say rape can only happen outside of a marriage.
从那时起，将近 20 个其他非洲国家也采取了类似的举措。但尼日利亚、埃塞俄比亚和肯尼亚不包括在内。这些国家的法律称，强奸只会发生在婚姻以外。
Rape and family violence are underreported throughout Africa. And even in the countries that have made marital rape a crime, few people accept it as such.
In Uganda, a bill making marital rape a crime was controversial when it was debated by parliament earlier this year. The bill gives a wife the right to say no to sex, but only soon after childbirth or if she believes her husband has a sexually transmitted disease.
Rita Achiro leads the Uganda Women’s Network, which has supported the legislation.
Rita Achiro 是支持这项立法的乌干达妇女网络的主管。
“You know, there’s the African thing that your husband can’t rape you. You know, they’ll tell you how can your husband rape you? It’s an entitlement. That’s, that’s the belief people have, so we are still going ‘round in circles trying to safeguard women using conditions under which she can deny the other sex. Ideally, it shouldn’t happen like that -- there shouldn’t be conditions. Rape is rape.”
In the countries that have passed laws against marital rape, punishments differ widely. They include fines and prison time -- from eight days in Burundi to life imprisonment in Zimbabwe. However, activists say sentencing rules are not respected. And they say few women bring rape charges, and few men are punished.
在那些通过了婚内强奸法律的国家，惩罚大不相同。它们包括罚款和入狱时间——从布隆迪的 8 天到津巴布韦的终身监禁。然而，活动人士称，量刑制度并未得以遵守。他们说，很少有女性提出强奸指控，很少有男人受到惩罚。
There is much cultural pressure on women not to bring charges. And many women resist putting their husbands in jail because they are the financial providers for the family.
If they seem to have little effect, why even pass laws against marital rape? Some activists in Africa say it is important to pass such laws to send a strong message that a woman is not her husband’s property.
Men Help Stop Rape in Africa
Gender-based violence has long been seen as a woman’s issue, even though most gender-based crimes are carried out by men. Now, VOA’s East Africa Correspondent Gabe Joselow reports, there are more and more programs across Africa to end gender-based violence. He says these programs work with men and dispute traditional beliefs about what it means to be a man.
性别暴力长期以来被看作是女性的问题，即便大多数性别犯罪是由男性实施的。现在，VOA 东非联络员 Gabe Joselow 报道，非洲有越来越多的防止性别暴力的项目。他说，这些项目和男性合作，并与传统想法争论它对男性的意义。
One prisoner at Liberia’s Monrovia Central Prison is serving 10 years for raping an 11-year old girl. The 33-year-old admitted to the crime, and is now getting mental health treatment through a government program for sex criminals. The prisoner spends much of his day learning skills that he hopes will permit him to lead a less-violent life after his release.
利比里亚蒙罗维亚中央监狱的一个罪犯因强奸一位 11 岁女孩被判 10 年。33 岁的他承认了罪行，而现在正在通过性罪犯政府项目接受精神治疗。这名犯人的大多数时间都用来学习技能，他希望这可以帮助他在获释之后过上远离暴力的生活。
“I’m a rapist. I was put in prison for the past two years. I’ve been able to improve my life in prison. I do some life skills programs like animal-raising, soap-making so I feel so much better. One day when I will be released, I will be a good citizen.”
During Liberia’s long civil war there were many rapes and other gender-based violence. Such crimes have continued in Liberia since the end of the war.
The government is giving more support to women who are victims of such crimes. It is also talking with men and to criminals who are seeking to improve their lives. These efforts are happening across Africa.
The women’s organization FEMNET supports gender equality activities across Africa. It has created men-to-men programs in seven countries. It is trying to bring in more men to support a campaign against gender-based violence.
女性机构 FEMNET 支持非洲的性别平等运动。它在 7 个国家建立了男性项目。它试图将更多男性带入一个反对性别暴力的运动。
FEMNET Chairwoman Emma Kaliya is based in Malawi. She says men should be involved in the campaign.
FEMNET 的女主席 Emma Kaliya 身在马拉维。她说，男性应该参与这场运动。
“Personally I do not agree that they are the only perpetrators of violence, but they form, they form the higher percentage of those that are called perpetrators, and therefore it is necessary that you bring them on board and not leaving them behind on this process of eliminating gender-based violence.”
The effort to bring more men to the campaign seems to be working. Male activists recently protested in Nairobi. They were demanding justice for a female teenage rape victim. Her attackers were freed after being ordered to cut grass as punishment for the rape.
Kennedy Otina is with FEMNET’s Men-to-Men program in Kenya. He was among the protesters that day. He says that he used to act like what he calls “a typical African man” with little respect for women. Then, he says, his girlfriend became pregnant and that changed everything.
Kennedy Otina 在肯尼亚 FEMNET 的男性项目工作。他是当天的抗议者之一。他说，他以前的行为就是他所说的对女性缺乏尊重的“典型非洲男性”。他说，后来他的女朋友怀孕了，而这改变了一切。
“The, the lady eventually gave birth to a baby girl and you know that’s where it was a turning point, because my daughter was so innocent and I was just imagining that if I am the one who is discriminating (against) her to that extent, what would happen to a man next door, who doesn’t have much connection to the girl?”
Mr. Otina now works in the community to increase understanding of the high level of sexual violence. Some of the programs give mental health treatment to men involved in these crimes.
Mr. Otina says men make the mistake of thinking the men-to-men program will help defend male rapists. Mr. Otina says that mistake gives him the chance to talk with the men responsible for the violence.
Otina 先生说，男人们错误地认为这些男性项目会帮男性强奸犯辩护。Otina 先生说，这种误解给了他与罪犯谈话的机会。
“When there’s a case in court then they tend to think or assume that we’ll be the ones to defend them, to support them in court, but you know when they get to us, we help them understand that violence against women is not acceptable.”
Kennedy Otina says he has a special way to persuade men of the importance of gender equality and ending gender-based violence. He talks to men about the women who are important in their lives -- like sisters, aunts or grandmothers.
Kennedy Otina 说，他有一个劝说男性相信性别平等重要性和制止性别暴力的特殊方法。他和男性谈论他们生命中重要的女性——比如姐姐、姨妈或祖母。
I’m Gabe Joselow, VOA News, Nairobi.
And that’s our program for today.
There are two more Learning English programs straight ahead -- and don’t forget to listen to VOA World News at the beginning of every hour Universal Time.
Thank you for spending some of your time with us today.
I’m Christopher Cruise.
I’ll see you next time on As It Is on The Voice of America.