The Global Campaign on 16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence | EUNewsletter

The Global Campaign on 16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence

27 November 2015
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On 25 November 2015 the “16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence” campaign was launched. The European Union Delegation to Armenia, the Armenian Government, the United Nations Armenia office, the US and UK Embassies, the OSCE office in Yerevan, the Council of Europe Office in Yerevan and an array of Armenian civil society partners issued a joint statement.

On the occasion of the International Day of Elimination of Violence against Women, the international community expressed its support to members of Armenian civil society who are calling for an end to violence against women. The international community is renewing its commitment to working with Armenian partners dedicated to protecting the rights of women and girls, as well as promoting women’s empowerment in Armenia.

Dirk Lorenz, the Head of Political, Economic, Press and Information Section at the EU Delegation to Armenia reaffirmed the EU Delegation’s readiness to support the protection of the rights of women and girls in Armenia, and to foster equal rights and opportunities for men and women:  ARS_8833‘The European Union condemns all form of violence against women and girls and protects them against gender-based violence through legislation and practical measures on victims’ rights. We focus on raising awareness through our national governments’ campaigns and transnational projects run by NGOs. In our partner countries, we encourage partner governments to adhere to the international commitments on gender equality, including the UN CEDAW and the Council of Europe’s Istanbul Convention. To better ensure the protection of victims, the EU and its member states have funded a variety of initiatives in support of women’s rights and combating domestic violence in Armenia. We finalised negotiations on the first EU Human Rights Budget Support Programme 2016-2018 with the government of Armenia; this has a €11 million budget. This will include a component on gender equality. One of the programme conditions is to adopt a standalone law on domestic violence in 2016’.

Garik HayrapARS_8853etyan, the UN Resident Coordinator a.i., noted that violence against women remained a serious issue in Armenia. UN studies suggest that about 60% of women in Armenia are exposed to at least one type of violence, while the annual loss resulting from depriving women of economic opportunities amounts to about $7 million.

Filaret Berikyan, the Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Issues, stressed the importance for Armenia to eliminate gender discrimination: ‘This campaign once again underlines the importance of this issue; also, the number of organisations joining the campaign is rising annually. However, it is not possible to put an end to this issue only by organising similar events. First of all, gender equality is a human right. Women have the right to live a decent life free of need and fear. Full realisation of their potential is a necessary tool to boost a country’s development and reduce poverty. In 2015 the Armenian government has made certain achievements in this area, particularly the National Assembly’s acceptance of the law for social support, where, for the first time, the term “domestic violence” has been used. The law broadens the scope of responsibilities of social workers and the authorities, and of support to victims of domestic violence’.

Nelly Duryan, the Chief of the Juvenile Desk of the Department of Criminal Investigation at the Police, presented statistical information on violence against women: ‘The statistics show that the number of those coming to the police about domestic violence is rising. 10 years ago fewer women would go to the police and speak out about domestic violence. Today the image has changed. In 2015, over 10 months, 645 domestic violence cases were registered compared to 575 cases in 2014. Among many reasons for this increase is that women trust the police more’.

The 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence is an international campaign, celebrated from 25 November to 10 December that seeks to galvanise action to end violence against women and girls around the world.

The Global Campaign on 16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence

On 25 November 2015 the “16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence” campaign was launched. The European Union Delegation to Armenia, the Armenian Government, the United Nations Armenia office, the US and UK Embassies, the OSCE office in Yerevan, the Council of Europe Office in Yerevan and an array of Armenian civil society partners issued a joint statement. On the occasion of the International Day of Elimination of Violence against Women, the international community expressed its support to members of Armenian civil society who are calling for an end to violence against women. The international community is renewing its commitment to working with Armenian partners dedicated to protecting the rights of women and girls, as well as promoting women’s empowerment in Armenia. Dirk Lorenz, the Head of Political, Economic, Press and Information Section at the EU Delegation to Armenia reaffirmed the EU Delegation's readiness to support the protection of the rights of women and girls in Armenia, and to foster equal rights and opportunities for men and women:  ARS_8833‘The European Union condemns all form of violence against women and girls and protects them against gender-based violence through legislation and practical measures on victims' rights. We focus on raising awareness through our national governments' campaigns and transnational projects run by NGOs. In our partner countries, we encourage partner governments to adhere to the international commitments on gender equality, including the UN CEDAW and the Council of Europe’s Istanbul Convention. To better ensure the protection of victims, the EU and its member states have funded a variety of initiatives in support of women's rights and combating domestic violence in Armenia. We finalised negotiations on the first EU Human Rights Budget Support Programme 2016-2018 with the government of Armenia; this has a €11 million budget. This will include a component on gender equality. One of the programme conditions is to adopt a standalone law on domestic violence in 2016’. Garik HayrapARS_8853etyan, the UN Resident Coordinator a.i., noted that violence against women remained a serious issue in Armenia. UN studies suggest that about 60% of women in Armenia are exposed to at least one type of violence, while the annual loss resulting from depriving women of economic opportunities amounts to about $7 million. Filaret Berikyan, the Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Issues, stressed the importance for Armenia to eliminate gender discrimination: ‘This campaign once again underlines the importance of this issue; also, the number of organisations joining the campaign is rising annually. However, it is not possible to put an end to this issue only by organising similar events. First of all, gender equality is a human right. Women have the right to live a decent life free of need and fear. Full realisation of their potential is a necessary tool to boost a country's development and reduce poverty. In 2015 the Armenian government has made certain achievements in this area, particularly the National Assembly’s acceptance of the law for social support, where, for the first time, the term "domestic violence" has been used. The law broadens the scope of responsibilities of social workers and the authorities, and of support to victims of domestic violence’. Nelly Duryan, the Chief of the Juvenile Desk of the Department of Criminal Investigation at the Police, presented statistical information on violence against women: ‘The statistics show that the number of those coming to the police about domestic violence is rising. 10 years ago fewer women would go to the police and speak out about domestic violence. Today the image has changed. In 2015, over 10 months, 645 domestic violence cases were registered compared to 575 cases in 2014. Among many reasons for this increase is that women trust the police more’. The 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence is an international campaign, celebrated from 25 November to 10 December that seeks to galvanise action to end violence against women and girls around the world.