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    UNIS/CP/1082
    22 November 2019

    Executive Director, UN Office on Drugs and Crime, Yury Fedotov:

    Statement on International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

    25 November 2019

    VIENNA, 25 November (UN Information Service) - Violence against women and girls is a human rights violation that remains all too pervasive in every part of the world. Too often, it goes unreported and unpunished, sometimes with deadly consequences.

    Nearly 60 per cent of all female homicide victims around the world die at the hands of intimate partners or family members, according to research by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). Such murders are part of a pattern, representing the lethal culmination of gender-related abuse and violence. Along this continuum of violence, aggression takes many forms, including that of online bullying and harassment, relationship abuse and rape as a weapon of war.

    We can end the violence by strengthening prevention and stopping the impunity. Concerted, coordinated and integrated action by the health, social services, police and justice sectors is needed to ensure that targeted support is available to all. UNODC has joined forces with our UN partners to develop and roll out women-centred prevention strategies and an essential services package for women and girls subject to violence.

    An important key to dismantling the structural conditions which play a role in enabling gender-based violence lies in early education, which can help boys break the cycle of negative gender stereotypes that fuel aggressive behaviour. 

    UNODC also works with governments to develop effective crime prevention and criminal justice responses to violence against women through guidelines and education in the areas of policing, legal medicine and prosecution. More women in law enforcement, particularly in decision-making roles, and a focus on gender-sensitive approaches must be part of the solution.

    Ending violence against women is a matter of justice. It is a commitment to equality and peace, and a pledge to save lives. On this International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and during the 16 Days of Activism which follow, let us stand together against rape and all gender-related violence.

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    For further information please contact:

    Sonya Yee
    Speechwriter and Spokesperson, UNODC
    Phone: (+43 1) 26060-4990
    Mobile: (+43-699) 1459-4990
    Email: sonya.yee[at]un.org