Asia-Pacific region UNiTEs to end violence against women and girls

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Asia-Pacific region UNiTEs to end violence against women and girls

25 November 2010

Steve Kraus, Director of the UNAIDS Regional Support Team for Asia and the Pacific greet HRH Princess Bajrakitiyabha of Thailand at the launch of the Asia Pacific UNiTE campaign. 25 November, 2010.

Women aged 15-44 are more at risk from rape and domestic violence than from cancer, car accidents, war and malaria, according to World Bank data. The most common form of violence experienced by women globally is physical violence inflicted by an intimate partner, with women beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused.

On the 25 of November, to coincide with the International Day for the elimination of violence against women, the United Nations Secretary-General’s campaign “UNiTE to End Violence Against Women” was launched in Bangkok, Thailand. The event was attended by Her Royal Highness Princess Bajrakitiyabha of Thailand, H.E. the Prime Minister of Thailand, Mr Abhisit Vejjajiva and together with heads of regional offices of United Nations agencies.

All forms of violence against women constitute a violation of human rights and a degradation of dignity and gender equality

Her Royal Highness Princess Bajrakitiyabha of Thailand.

“All forms of violence against women constitute a violation of human rights and a degradation of dignity and gender equality,” said Her Royal Highness Princess Bajrakitiyabha of Thailand.

The UNiTE Asia-Pacific campaign aims to rally governments, civil society, the private sector, the media and the United Nations family around the joint goal to eliminate gender based violence in the region.

“Neither gender equality, nor development can be fully realized if violence against women and girls is allowed to take place, unabated and unresolved,” Prime Minister of Thailand, Mr Abhisit Vejjajiva said in his statement at the launch.

Women’s heightened risk of HIV infection through violence was highlighted at the launch as a central concern for the campaign. According to population based studies carried out in the region, women who have experienced physical as well as sexual violence were four times more likely to be infected with HIV than the women who reported no such experiences.  

To realize UNAIDS vision of zero new infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths, tackling violence against women is critical

Steve Kraus, Director of the UNAIDS Regional Support Team for Asia and the Pacific

“To realize UNAIDS vision of zero new infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths, tackling violence against women is critical,” Steve Kraus, Director of the UNAIDS Regional Support Team for Asia and the Pacific, who participated in the launch ceremony.  

The UNAIDS Regional Support Team for Asia and the Pacific, and UNFPA Asia Pacific Regional Office are working closely with campaign hosts UNIFEM and the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) in the roll out and implementation of the campaign in the region.

Launched in 2008, the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s UNiTE to End Violence against Women campaign aims to prevent and eliminate violence against women and girls in all parts of the world.