Yesterday, Principal Deputy National Security Advisor Jon Finer, Assistant to the President and Director of the Gender Policy Council Jennifer Klein, and Principal Deputy National Security Advisor to the Vice President Dr. Rebecca Lissner, and other senior National Security Council and Gender Policy Council officials met with the UN Special Representative of the Secretary General (SRSG) on Sexual Violence in Conflict Pramila Patten.  During the meeting, SRSG Patten detailed the scope and methodology of her team’s January 29 – February 14 mission to Israel and the West Bank and her report on the findings of this travel.  White House officials conveyed President Biden and Vice President Harris’s deep concern about the horrific reports of sexual violence committed by Hamas terrorists on October 7 and reports of ongoing acts of gender-based violence against those in captivity.  Attendees also discussed the need for all credible allegations to be investigated and steps taken, as appropriate, to hold accountable those responsible.

White House officials underscored the importance of preventing harm to Israeli and Palestinian civilians, and shared deep concern about the loss of innocent life in this conflict and about the disturbing reports of sexual violence. They emphasized steps the Biden-Harris Administration has taken to promote accountability for conflict-related sexual violence around the world, including President Biden’s November 2022 Memorandum on Promoting Accountability for Conflict-Related Sexual Violence.


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