Mar 062007

As seems to always be the case in the run-up to International Women’s Day, my inbox is overflowing with stories about women throughout the world.  Here are a few sobering reports:
From the Moscow Times:

“Each year, more than 14,000 women are killed in acts of domestic violence, meaning that more than one woman dies in Russia at the hands of a relative, partner or former partner every hour. It is a crime common to all of the country’s regions and against women of all social classes and ethnic backgrounds.”

From Pakistan:

“A Human Rights Commission of Pakistan report says, at least 565 women and girls were killed in the country in 2006 for the sake of ‘honour’. It is nearly double the number compared to the previous year (287). The report acknowledges that many such killings go unreported and the actual figure may be more than 1,000 — a horrific number indeed. According to another report released by lawyers for the Human Rights and Legal Aid, there were more than 7,500 cases of violence, physical assault and torture against women during the year. Most of these women were victims of domestic violence or honour-related atrocities, and the perpetrators were their close relatives, such as husbands, fathers and brothers.”

And in Afghanistan:

“One out of five children dies before the age of five and maternal mortality is among the highest in the world. Some 90% of adult women are illiterate. Some 75% of girls attending primary school drop out before grade five. Newly re-opened girls’ schools are closing down due to violence against women and girls. Stories are told of how young women today are less educated than those belonging to their grandmothers’ generation. Sexual violence against girls, institutionalised through “traditions” such as child marriage, continues to be rife. Suicide among young women is said to be increasing. A May 2006 United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) survey on violence against women in Afghanistan indicates that it’s widespread, extreme, systematic and unreported.”

 March 6, 2007  Posted by on March 6, 2007

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