VIDEO: Angelina Jolie denounces rape as a weapon of war
Angelina Jolie is lending her star power to help stop sexual violence in war-torn countries.
Angelina Jolie has joined forces with British Foreign Secretary William Hague to bring justice to victims of sexual violence in conflict zones.
1200 government ministers, judicial and military officials and activists are attending the End Sexual Violence in Conflict summit, highlighting the political need to focus on the rape of women and young children as a means of control.
Kicking off the conference, the Maleficent star remembered a victim she spoke to in the past and dedicated the four-day event to her.
"On our way over, we spoke about the women we met recently on our last trip, and in particular, one woman, who said that she had yet to tell her child that she had been raped because she was so humiliated and she could not bring herself to admit it to him," Jolie said.
"And she felt that having had no justice for her particular crime, in her particular situation, and having seen the actual man who raped her on the streets free, she really felt abandoned by the world. On the way over, we thought, 'What is she going to think of this day?' This day is for her."
Watch Angelina Jolie's speech at the sexual violence summit
"We must send a message around the world that there is no disgrace in being a survivor of sexual violence, that the shame is on the aggressor," Jolie stated.
"There is nothing inevitable about it — it is a weapon of war aimed at civilians. It has nothing to do with sex, everything to do with power… done to torture and humiliate people and often to very young children.
"We need to see real commitment and go after the worst perpetrators, to fund proper protection for vulnerable people, and to step in to help the worst-affected countries."
Jolie's 2011 directorial debut, In the Land of Blood and Honey, was set during the Bosnian War during which an estimated 20,000 women were believed raped.