Sexual assault often accompanies military conflict. In many wars, some soldiers use their armed power to inflict sexual violence on prisoners and civilians. Sexual violence can at times become systematic, targeting specific groups of combatants or civilians to intimidate and humiliate them.
Many Syrian civilians have been caught in the midst of fighting, while millions of others have fled their homes as refugees—both within Syria and in neighboring countries. All civilians risk detention, interrogation, and violence at the hands of the soldiers who are waging civil warfare.
Recent reports from Syria indicate that rape is being employed as a weapon in the fierce fighting of the Syrian Civil War.
The Atlantic provides data on reported incidents of sexual violence against female and male victims in the following table:
The International Rescue Committee (IRC) has published a report on the conditions of Syrian refugees, which discusses the problem of rape in the conflict. The Washington Post and the Guardian also report on rape in the Syrian Civil War.