United Nations Launches Campaign for Action on Violence Against Women

Women RightsThe United Nations to galvanise support for global action to end violence against women and girls.

UNITED NATIONS: India’s iconic India Gate and the Delhi Metro will join hundreds of monuments across the world that will be illuminated as part of a UN effort to galvanise support for global action to end violence against women and girls.

India Gate will be illuminated in orange and messages of ending violence against women will be displayed on panel boards in two high-traffic lines of the Delhi Metro as part of the UN’s ‘Orange the World’ campaign that includes parades, soccer matches, school debates and the lighting up of hundreds of iconic monuments.

“Violence against women and girls remains one of the most serious – and the most tolerated – human rights violations,” said UN Under Secretary-General and UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka in a statement.

“It is both a cause and a consequence of gender inequality and discrimination. Its continued presence is one of the clearest markers of societies out of balance and we are determined to change that,” she said.

Violence against women and girls affects one in three worldwide.

The call to action is part of the UN Secretary-General’s’ Unite to end violence against women’ campaign, led by UN Women, the UN’s agency for gender equality.

The colour orange, which has come to symbolise a bright and optimistic future free from violence against women and girls, will help unify the large-scale social mobilisation.

It will be carried out during the civil society-driven ’16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence’, which will run from today commemorated as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women until Human Rights Day on December 10.

This year’s ‘Orange the World’ initiative will focus on the theme of preventing violence against women and girls, in the specific context of the adoption of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, which includes targets on ending violence against women and girls.

Globally, during the fortnight under the ‘Orange the world’ call, over 450 events are planned in more than 70 countries throughout the 16 days.

They include the lighting of major monuments and numerous activities involving civil society such as dialogue sessions with faith-based leaders, film screenings, theatre and dance performances, rallies, marches, marathons and digital activism via social media platforms.

Events will include the orange lighting of major landmarks including the Niagara Falls (Canada/USA), the European Commission building (Belgium) and Council of Europe building (France), the Little Mermaid statue in Copenhagen (Denmark), the archaeological ruins at Petra (Jordan), and the Palais de Justice (Democratic Republic of the Congo).

The official commemoration of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women in New York will also see the launch of a landmark ‘UN Framework to Underpin Action to Prevent Violence against Women’ jointly developed by a number of UN entities.

According to UN Women, there has been some progress over the last few decades on the issue of violence against women with 125 countries having laws against sexual harassment and 119 against domestic violence, but only 52 countries on marital rape.

The agency warned that despite efforts, violence against women and girls continues in every country, with women being beaten in their homes, harassed on the streets and bullied on the Internet.

UN Women stressed that preventing and ending violence means tackling its root cause, gender inequality.

The recently adopted Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) include a goal dedicated to gender equality that aims to end all forms of discrimination against women and girls.

It recognises violence against women as an obstacle to fully achieving the Agenda for Sustainable Development and provides comprehensive indicators on what should be done to address that goal.



Story First Published: November 25, 2015 18:26 IST

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