UNDP chief calls for an end to violence against women

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A victim of sexual violence, Beatrice is gradually learning to live again thanks to moral and financial support provided by her Community Centre in South Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo. Photo: Junior D. Kannah/UNDP DRC

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Administrator Helen Clark called Friday for scaled-up efforts globally to stop violence against women, describing it as a weapon of war in much of the world and a major obstacle to equality and development. 

In a statement Friday, Ms. Clark said "Let's mark International Women's Day this year not only by recognizing the devastating impact of violence against women, but by renewing our collective efforts to stop it once and for all".

The UNDP chief said "It is now time for increased action to end this abuse," noting that in 1995, "governments identified violence against women as a violation of human rights and an 'obstacle to the achievement of the objectives of equality, development, and peace". 

But she said "the persistent prevalence of violence against women—experienced by up to seven in ten women at some point in their lifetime—shows that promises to end violence against women have not been met".

She lamented that "Gender-based violence is a means by which inequalities between men and women are perpetuated throughout the world," adding that "it is essential to address [it] if we are to achieve the Millennium Development Goals and accelerate development progress more broadly".

Donn Bobb, United Nations.

Duration: 1’06″

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