War, Violence Take Toll on Women

Around the world, women and girls are victims of countless acts of violence that occur in every segment of society : UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

War, Violence Take Toll on Women

"Violence against women and girls continues unabated in every continent, country and culture," Ban said in a message to mark the International Women's Day on March 8, reported Agence France Presse (AFP).

"It takes a devastating toll on women's lives, on their families and on society as a whole," warned the UN chief.

Regardless of class, ethnicity, culture or country, violence against women is not random, he said, insisting that women and girls are victimized because they are females.

And worse still, cautioned the UN chief, women dilemmas usually go unchecked.

"Most societies prohibit such violence -- yet the reality is that too often, it is covered up or tacitly condoned."

Ban called for a global unity to fight the violations of women's human rights, pledging that the UN will be at the forefront.

Many leading organizations have warned that the condition of women continues to be largely deplorable in the modern world.

Today's range of gender-based abuses includes rape, trafficking, forced prostitution, dowry-related violence, domestic violence and battering, according to the UN Development Fund for Women.

The International Women's Day dates back to the 19th century when on March 8, 1857, the women garment workers of New York protested against appalling work environment and poor wages.

The theme of this year's Day is "Ending impunity for violence against women".

Wartime  

 
Women in Iraq are bearing the brunt of the war and the deadly sectarian violence. 

As activists around the world call for advancing women empowerment and gender equality, the sufferings of women in war-ravaged Iraq have doubled during the nearly four-year conflict.

"Often, the problems are simply psychological. They come to talk about their husbands who have been killed or being driven out of their neighborhoods," Fatima, a 55-year-old Baghdad gynecologist, told AFP.

After the invasion, the number of women who give birth at home has towered.

"Pregnant women can't go to hospital if they go into labor during the overnight curfew," Fatima said.

Far from lifesaving emergency care, many mothers die from preventable complications, she added.

"More and more of them are dying, along with their babies."

According to UN health agencies, maternal mortality doubled between 1989 and 2001 under the effects of the economic embargo imposed on Saddam Hussein's regime.

US President George Bush invaded the oil-rich Arab country in 2003 under the pretext that the regime was developing weapons of mass destruction, a claim later refuted by US weapons inspectors.

Since then, Iraqis have been caught up in an astonishing spiral of violence, a situation deeply reflected on women and girls.

"Some families do not allow their girls to go to school. Not because they are against education, but because they are scared," asserted PM Layla al-Alkhafaji.

Recalling that women in Iraq were used to driving cars, she many are now refraining.

"Myself, I don't take this risk. It would bring people's attention.

"Women try everything to avoid attention." 

Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16
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