On International Day, UN chief says ‘violence against women is not inevitable’

In a virtual event to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, commemorated annually on 25 November, UN Women chief Sima Bahous described gender-based violence (GBV) as “a global crisis”.

“In all of our own neighbourhoods, there are women and girls living in danger. Around the world, conflict, climate-related natural disasters, food insecurity and human rights violations are exacerbating violence against women”, she said.

And according to UN Women, more than 70 per cent have experienced GBV in some crisis settings.

COVID-19 has triggered a shadow pandemic, which enables unseen violence. She cited an increase in reports on helplines for violence against women and girls (VAWG) in all corners of the world.  This year, the UNiTE campaign set “Orange the World: End Violence against Women Now!” as the official theme.