Thursday, October 19, 2006

Report Urges United Nations Member States to Take Domestic Violence More Seriously

"More than half the 192 member states of the United Nations have no laws to punish men who are violent against women, a U.N. report showed on Tuesday. The report, issued by Secretary-General Kofi Annan's office, found violence against women and girls was a global phenomenon that affects at least one in three females in rich and poor countries alike. It also said the United Nations itself had too many programs that overlapped and were uncoordinated and for years had no specific gender-oriented programs at all. "The curtain has finally been drawn from violence against women," U.N. Assistant Secretary-General Rachel Mayanja told a news conference. "It is a public issue, it is all our issue and therefore we have an obligation to act."

The 139-page report said only 89 countries have some legislation on domestic violence, but that in many cases the implementation of those laws was weak. "The study has laid out for us a number of actions that have to be taken to try and eliminate this scourge," Mayanja said, adding that the aim of the study was to spark action and not to "gather dust on a shelf."" By Michelle Nichols Reuters, Yahoo News Link to Article (last visited 10-18-06 NVS)

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