Gender-based Violence: a global concern

There is no official data so far, but it is estimated that millions of girls and women around the world have been victims of gender violence. (Getty)

Abuse happens in every country and it affects mainly women and girls

By Clàudia Aizpitarte

Gender violence affects people from all around the world. According to the UN, it is “one of the most devastating violations of human rights.”

The vast majority of victims of gender violence are girls and women. However, in some regions and countries, these abuses are not recognized as such, since they are part of the social dynamics that men use to impose their power in society.

According to the UN’s 2017 report, between 2005 and 2016, almost one in five women between 15 and 49 years of age were physically or sexually abused by their partners.

As part of the Sustainable Development Goals, the UN is working to put an end to this scourge. Goal 5 aims to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls within the five continents by 2030.

Despite initiatives taken at the local, regional or global level, cases of abuse and femicide (gender-based killings of women) are still happening all over the world. In some cases, the extreme violence and cruelty of some cases have made them appear on international media.

In 2001, in Venezuela, 18-year-old Linda Loaiza was kidnapped by Luis Carrera Molina. The man kept her captive, raped and tortured her for four months. Linda managed to escape and ask for help when the attacker thought she was dead.

Spanish society has followed up the case of La Manada, a group of five boys who raped an 18-year-old girl during the San Fermines of 2016. The five were charged with crime of sexual abuse (not aggression), something that was greatly criticized by the people and even some judges.

Women being assaulted or abused by their partners can also leave other victims.

This is the case of the murder of Jiang Che, a young girl from China who was trying to protect a friend who was being abused. Jiang Che had sheltered the victim in her apartment, but when his ex-boyfriend went looking for her, he stabbed Jiang Che to make his ex-partner feel guilty.

In Brazil, a woman is murdered by her partner every two hours. Fran suffered abuse from her husband for over 12 years; he was so violent that he came to murder Fran’s father and brother as a threat. In the end, thanks to the support of the Noeli do Santos home, she managed to escape.

Information put together in collaboration with Facultat de Comunicació i Relacions Internacionals Blanquerna

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