Press statement

UNAIDS commends swift national action in response to killing of Bangladeshi girl

GENEVA, 11 February 2011—The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) deplores the recent killing of a teenage girl in Bangladesh. At the same time, UNAIDS commends the Government of Bangladesh and the country’s judiciary for acting swiftly to investigate the killing, as well as national civil society and media organizations for their work in bringing this case to public attention.

Hena Akter, a 15-year-old girl from the district of Shariatpur, Bangladesh, was publicly whipped for an alleged affair and died six days later. After a local autopsy recorded no injuries in the death of Ms Akter, the High Court of Bangladesh ordered a second post-mortem examination that confirmed that Ms Akter had suffered multiple injuries and died as a result of bleeding. The High Court promptly ordered the arrest of all people involved in this killing.

UNAIDS encourages countries and communities to create safer environments that protect women and girls from violence. Working towards the goal of “zero tolerance for gender-based violence,” UNAIDS supports the UN Secretary-General’s UNiTE campaign to End Violence against Women.

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