Violence against women in the world …

by Vincent Desrus

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Fast facts: statistics on violence against women and girls

Between 15 and 76 % of women are targeted for physical and/or sexual violence in their lifetime, according to the available country data. Most of this violence takes place within intimate relationships, with many women (ranging from 9 to 70 %) reporting their husbands or partners as the perpetrator.

Femicide

  • In Guatemala, two women are murdered, on average, each day.

  • In India, 8,093 cases of dowry-related death were reported in 2007; an unknown number of murders of women and young girls were falsely labeled ‘suicides’ or ‘accidents’.

  • In Australia, Canada, Israel, South Africa and the United States, between 40 and 70 % of female murder victims were killed by their intimate partners.

  • In the State of Chihuahua, Mexico, 66 % of murders of women were committed by husbands, boyfriends or other family members.

Violence and Young Women

  • Worldwide, up to 50 % of sexual assaults are committed against girls under 16.

  • An estimated 150 million girls under the age of 18 suffered some form of sexual violence in 2002 alone.

  • The first sexual experience of some 30 % of women was forced. The percentage is even higher among those who were under 15 at the time of their sexual initiation, with up to 45 % reporting that the experience was forced.

Harmful Practices

  • Approximately 100 to 140 million girls and women in the world have experienced female genital mutilation/cutting, with more than 3 million girls in Africa annually at risk of the practice.

  • Over 60 million girls worldwide are child brides, married before the age of 18, primarily in South Asia (31.3 million) and sub-Saharan Africa (14.1 million). Violence and abuse characterize married life for many of these girls. Women who marry early are more likely to be beaten or threatened, and more likely to believe that a husband might sometimes be justified in beating his wife.

Trafficking

  • Women and girls are 80 % of the estimated 800,000 people trafficked across national borders annually, with the majority (79 %) trafficked for sexual exploitation. Within countries, many more women and girls are trafficked, often for purposes of sexual exploitation or domestic servitude.

  • One study in Europe found that 60 % of trafficked women had experienced physical and/or sexual violence before being trafficked, pointing to gender-based violence as a push factor in the trafficking of women.

Sexual Harassment

  • Between 40 and 50 % of women in European Union countries experience unwanted sexual advances, physical contact or other forms of sexual harassment at work.

  • Across Asia, studies in Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines and South Korea show that 30 to 40 % of women suffer workplace sexual harassment.

  • In Nairobi, 20 % of women have been sexually harassed at work or school.

  • In the United States, 83 % of girls aged 12 to 16 experienced some form of sexual harassment in public schools.

Rape in the context of Conflict

  • Conservative estimates suggest that 20,000 to 50,000 women were raped during the 1992-1995 war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, while approximately 250,000 to 500,000 women and girls were targeted in the 1994 Rwandan genocide.

  • Between 50,000 and 64,000 women in camps for internally displaced people in Sierra Leone were sexually assaulted by combatants between 1991 and 2001.

  • In eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, at least 200,000 cases of sexual violence, mostly involving women and girls, have been documented since 1996: the actual numbers are believed to be far higher.

     

    THAT’S A LOT OF NUMBERS … SO IMAGINE THE NUMBER OF LIVES DESTROYED…

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