Widad Akrawi


“Violence against females is a worldwide pandemic that devastates victims, threatens families, intensifies inequality, weakens societies and undermines global efforts to combat poverty through sustainable development. It is unacceptable that an estimated 20 percent of women worldwide will be a victim of rape or sexual assault at some point in her lifetime and that sexual assaults are the most common offence against females. Current national laws and policies on violence against women have failed to adequately protect the victims of domestic violence and violence against females, including violence in the public sphere, discrimination, human trafficking, exploitation, FGM, forced- and child marriages, and national and transnational conflicts. Hence, the need for a new effective and legally binding norm on violence against females. The commitment to combat gender-based violence is a crucial investment in healthy minds and bodies; it is the first step towards creating inclusive, equitable, productive and healthy societies. We need an integrated approach to end violence against females, and as civil society we are ready to provide direction and assist in the development of a global norm that counter the far-reaching impacts of gender-based violence on lives and livelihoods.”

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