In South Africa, a woman is killed every 6 hours by an intimate partner. Women and girls represent 80 percent of the estimated 800,000 people trafficked annually, with the majority trafficked for sexual exploitation. In Sao Paolo, Brazil a woman is assaulted every 15 seconds. Approximately 250,000 to 500,000 women and girls were raped during the 1994 Rwandan genocide.
Human trafficking constitutes an especially heinous form of violence against women. A prayer service, prepared by the JPIC Anti-Trafficking Working Group, is now available in multiple languages, including English, Italian, Spanish, French, Portuguese, German, Dutch, Japanese, and Korean. It can be found here.
On 25 November 2009 the world commemorates the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. Two recent resolutions of the UN Security Council stand out in the fight to end sexual violence against women.
On 8 March 2009 the world celebrates International Women’s Day. The theme of International Women’s Day 2009 is Women and men: united to end violence against women and girls. For UN information about this day, see www.un.org/events/women/iwd.
As we prepare to celebrate International Women’s Day again, here are four suggestions for learning more and becoming engaged with the international women’s agenda.