ODVV Statement on the International Day for the...
Violence against half the population of the world, is an obstacle in social and economic development, expansion of peace and security and also an obstacle in the way of the eradication of poverty, the fight against diseases and many other challenges in various parts of the world. This type of violence is the consequences of a discrimination which has historically been applied against this group of humanity, and shows itself in various forms.
Today, approximately 750 million girls around the world are forced to marry before the age of 18. Also one in three women in the world experience physical and sexual abuse in one form or other. Women and girls make up 70 percent of victims of human trafficking, and two out of three child victims of trafficking are girls(1) . Approximately 600 million women live in countries where domestic violence is not criminalised.(2)
The thing that is strange is that in most of these countries, less than 40 percent of women who are subjected to abuse seek help. In view of the extent of violence against women and its damaging repercussions, keeping the experience of abuse a secret and women avoiding active reaction towards it, in itself is one of the signs of violence against women in all societies.
Women’s vulnerability towards violence increases dramatically, particularly during crises such as wars and conflicts, migration and asylum-seeking. Abuses such as rape, forced pregnancies, forced sterilisation and sex slavery during war, is carried out by the enemy as a weapon and although many international law documents deem rape during conflict as example of war crimes and crimes against humanity; but we are witness to increasing cases of these abuses, particularly in the Middle East committed by ISIS in Syria and Iraq. Also the Rohingya women are faced with crisis conditions. In this region physical and sexual abuse are applied systematically to destroy their Islamic culture.
Furthermore, women refugees and migrants, are faced with serious violence due to the dominant legal conditions against them in destination countries and their lack of knowledge of the local language and laws. Sexual exploitations among women migrants have turned into a common phenomenon even in European and American countries.
As an NGO that fundamentally is active in the fight against human rights violations, the ODVV has its foundations set specifically for the fight against violence and abuse. The ODVV deems violence against women as violation of human rights and one of the factors in the reproduction of violence, and calls domestic and international organizations and bodies, NGOs and civil society to pay further attention to women and their needs. And to take necessary all sided action to safeguard their rights and control discrimination and violence against women.
We believe that violence against women and girls while is still a global problem, but it is not unavoildable and speedier steps can be taken in its elimination through macro and micro planning. One of the important challenges in this regard is the lack of budget for this sector and therefore necessary measures for putting an end to violence against women is faced with shortfalls. The sustainable development objectives give a lot of hope but for them to be realised and funds are needed for notable changes to take place in the lives of women and girls.
Public education campaigns and empowerment programmes for women and girls can play important roles which NGOs can play towards culture building and education of their societies. NGOs active in women’s rights at national and international levels must prevent violence against women, particularly in conflict zones and also help women victims as one of the priorities in today’s world. Medical, psychiatric, legal and economic assistance for women are some of the ways to help.
The ODVV believes that a world free of violence, is a much more beautiful world for all Mankind.