Today is International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, marked by nations around the world to combat and raise awareness of this.
A conference entitled "Leave no one behind: End violence against women and girls!" has been held in Baku.
It also coincides with the trial in Spain of five men accused of gang raping a woman, then 18, in July 2016 during the famed Pamplona bull-running festival, a case that has shocked the country. According to some national surveys, however, the numbers report that 70% of women have experienced physical or sexual violence by a sexual partner during their lifetime. In 2012, "almost half of all women who were victims of intentional homicide worldwide were killed by an intimate partner or family member, compared to 6 percent of male victims".
It is now widely recognized that violence against women, including harassment and harmful practices, is a major barrier to women and girls enjoying their fundamental human rights, and is a direct challenge to women's inclusion and participation in sustaining peace. The employment rate for women aged 25-64 has increased from about 63 per cent 10 years ago to 72 per cent last year. "Let's put an end to violence against all women!"
HEALTH services can take specific steps to respond to violence against women and help prevent its future occurrences, if they are equipped with the tools and training they need.
The protesters carried banners denouncing domestic violence and homicide against women on the iconic Istiklal Avenue, and played drums and chanted slogans: "Women are stronger together", "We want an entire life not small pieces". Frameworks that include a specific target for ending violence against women and girls, offer huge promise but must be adequately funded in order to bring real and significant changes in the lives of women and girls.
This theme reinforces the UNiTE Campaign's commitment to a world free from violence for all women and girls around the world.
Saturday marks the start of the 16 days of activism to end gender-based violence around the world.
In Afghanistan, the top United Nations official in the country stressed that "life free from all forms of violence is the right of every Afghan woman and girl".