Violence Against Women
At least three women were his victims in the past four years. Rapist, age 31, father of five less than 10 years old children, the “dragon” of Dionyssos area or of north areas of Attica, who was arrested in 30 January 2013, attributes (!) his crimes to lack of love during his childhood and to sexual rejection by his wife. Psychological profile of the offender, will likely employ specialists later. Which is important now is physical and psychological trauma of those women who suffered the consequences of his disorder-without disregard the consequences on the psyche of his five kids.
He was approaching women that were waiting for a bus and offered them a drive. How much trust should any woman show to strangers? Advice of Police suggest: “Never accept to be driven by strangers and never hitchhike.
That doesn’t mean that victims are responsible for unlawful, criminal, unhealthy behavior of offenders.
Another 34 year old victim was raped, beaten to death and burnt outside her home last December. The ferocity of the crime and nerve of the offender, prove that logic and physical strength of a woman is not enough to protect her.
Regardless the pathology of the criminals and the crime rates in Greece, violence against women is a global problem without borders, ethnicity, economic and social status or religion. One in three women around the world, will suffer some kind of gender-based violence during her life and in some countries, the percentage is up to 70%.
The story of the 23 year old Indian student, who was gang raped and was beaten to death and as a result died two weeks later in December 2012, is globally known and shocked because of its cruelty. If, the 700 rapes in New Delhi India during 2012, are regarded by some people as “statistics” of a vast, densely populated, distant country or as consequences of culture, religion or “particularity”, the 1.350 rapes and about 500 attempted rapes that were reported in Greece between 2005 and 2010- one hundred fifty victims that report that crimes each year, prove that the problem concerns us all. Three million women raped each year in Great Britain and reporting of one rape each 6, 2 minutes in the U.S., invalidate the argument of cultural or geographical boundaries.
Rape is not the only form of violence that women suffer because of their gender. Weaker body strength, financial dependence combined with social, customary, religious factors, make women diachronically, victims or potential victims of rape, sexual assault and trafficking. And at high rate, they are not safe not even into their family, as a widespread form of violence against women is domestic violence, which occurs as psychological violence, financial exploitation, physical and sexual abuse.
The United Nations define violence against women as: “Any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life.”
They also include domestic violence, sexual harassment, rape, sexual violence during conflict situations and harmful customary or traditional practices such as female genital mutilation, forced marriages and honour crimes.
Violence is an abuse of human rights and blatant violation of the right to life, to personal freedom and physical and mental integrity, to equal treatment and protection by the law.
According to World Health Organization’s (WHO) Multi-country study on women’s health and domestic violence against women in 10 mainly developing countries found that, among women aged 15-49: between 15% of women in Japan and 71% of women in Ethiopia reported physical and/or sexual violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime.
On 25 November 1960, three Dominican sisters, political activists known as the Hermanas Mirabal, were brutally assassinated for opposing the Trujillo dictatorship.
The International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women remembers this day.
The United Nations General Assembly, designated 25 November as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, inviting governments, international organizations and NGOs to organize activities on the day designed to raise public awareness of the problem of maltreatment of women, during conflicts as well as in peaceful periods.
Inside European Union (EU), 20 to 25% of women have suffered physical violence at least once during their lives.
Genital mutilation in Eastern Africa and in Arabian Peninsula is regarded as “cultural shortfall” but half a million women who reside Europe and have been subjected to it, drove EU to strategy “to eradicate female genital mutilation once and for all across Europe using all appropriate instruments, including criminal law, within the limits of the EU’s powers, supported by a Europe-wide awareness-raising campaign on violence against women as foreseen in the EU Plan of Action on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment in Development (2010-2015).”
February 6th ,is marked as the International Day of Zero Tolerance against Female Genital Mutilation.
High Representative Catherine Ashton, on behalf of EU, declared on 25 November 2012: “Violence against women is arguably the most widespread human rights violation of our time. A violation that claims millions of victims every year and causes terrible physical and emotional pain. We must not only help prevent violence; we must also work to provide women with access to economic opportunities, to ensure their equal participation in public life, repeal laws and practices that continue to discriminate against them and ensure that homes, offices, streets and schools are safe for women and girls.”
Research recently conducted by the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) shows that: “Domestic violence against women remains widespread and under-reported and that victims of violence are not effectively supported by public services. Insufficient specialised services for women victims of violence and the absence of mandatory gender-sensitive training for professional helpers of victims and perpetrators are only a few of the reasons. In fact, only 12 out of the 27 EU Member States legally foresee state funding of specialised services for women victims of violence.”
Next EIGE’s report, will focus on: intimate partner violence, sexual abuse, rape, sexual harassment, persecution, genital mutilation, forced marriage and crimes of honor.
A major problem that employs Greece during recent years is trafficking. Women-victims of trafficking are forced to prostitution and are exploited.
Recently, illegal foreign prostitutes in Greece were reviled by the authorities and the press, because they transmitted HIV virus to their Greek customers.
According to U.S. Department of State for trafficking in persons report 2010:
“Greece is a transit and destination country for women and children who are subjected to trafficking in persons, specifically forced prostitution and for children, men, and women who are in conditions of forced labor.
The Government of Greece:
- ·Does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking; however, it is making significant efforts to do so.
- ·Demonstrated some progress in ensuring that victims of trafficking were provided access to essential services. According to NGOs, however, victim identification continued to be the government’s greatest anti-trafficking weakness.
- ·Continued to operate a short-term shelter, which could accommodate children, in addition to two long-term shelters for women.
- ·Also referred child victims to orphanages or detention centers that did not have specialized facilities for trafficking victims. One NGO reported that authorities released unaccompanied foreign minors onto the street with little support after detention.
- ·Did not run any new campaigns targeting the clients of prostitution or beneficiaries of forced labor. Implemented a law enforcement-focused national plan of anti-trafficking action; however, the government lacked a central authority to coordinate ministries’ anti-trafficking efforts and monitor anti-trafficking results. Coordination of data between agencies remained ad hoc.
- ·Facilitated anti-trafficking partnerships by funding initiatives in neighboring countries. Greek law provide extraterritorial jurisdiction over child sex tourism offenses by its nationals; the government did not report any prosecutions of Greek citizens for child sex tourism during the reporting period. Gave its peacekeeping troops anti-trafficking training before deploying them abroad.
Greece has not signed the UN Convention of 1950 for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others and has not ratified the Protocol Organization to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children of 2000 , which supplements the UN Convention against Transnational crime.
In Italy where male abuse is a significant problem, a UN report found that one third of women had reported being a victim of serious domestic violence and 127 women were murdered by men in 2010.
Last December, a priest, Father Piero Corsi attacked women for not cleaning their houses and serving fast food and called on women to engage in “healthy self criticism” over femicide – men murdering women.
In an astonishing message, which pinned to the door of the church in the northern village of San Terenzo di Lerici, he attacked pornography but said women shared the blame for “provoking the worst instincts which then turn into violence and sexual abuse” reported Daily Mail, on 28.12.2012.
In Rochdale a town in Greater Manchester, England, five girls who were raped, physically assaulted and forced to have sex with several men in a day, several times a week were referred to be “making their own choices” and “engaging in consensual sexual activity”.
One 13-year-old victim had an abortion after falling pregnant. Another gave evidence of being raped by two men while “so drunk she was vomiting over the side of the bed”, reported The Guardian in September 2012
U.N. Women, supported by the Secretary-General’s Campaign UNITE, Justice Rapid Response (JRR) and the Institute for International Criminal Investigations (IICI), have jointly developed a specialized training course for judges and other experts the goal of which is to increase the pool of experts that can be rapidly deployed to participate in investigations into conflict-related gender-based crimes.
The week-long training course on “Investigating Cases of Sexual and Gender-based Violence as International Crimes”, being held in Pretoria South Africa from January 27 to 1 February 2013, is the second of a series of courses, the first of which was held in The Hague, Netherlands, in September 2012.
The experts trained in these courses come from all regions of the world, and those who successfully complete the training will become part of a special joint JRR-UN Women roster, making them available for rapid deployment at the request of Governments, as well as the United Nations, the International Criminal Court, and other international institutions with jurisdiction to carry out such investigations.
There is one universal truth, applicable to all countries, cultures and communities: violence against women is never acceptable, never excusable, never tolerable.
SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON
Gender-based violence stems from the failure of governments and societies to recognize the human rights of women.
Each and every woman should be free and protected by laws, society and humanitarian efforts. Unfortunately, women remain “second class” citizens and the victims- together with children- of wars, conflicts, politics and global problems.
In many countries, an overwhelming number of women are forced to sterilization, to marriage against their will or are deprived of education and suffer lots of inequalities as well as atrocities. In each country of all continents, women have to act as individuals or as members of supporting groups, local and international organizations.
Any individual should be interested in women’s future, health,freedom, safety, equal human rights.
TAKE ACTION NOW.