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One woman or girl killed by family members every 11 minutes globally, says UN

Israeli women raise their clenched fists as they lie in mock coffins to represent those killed as a result of domestic violence, outside the District Court in the Israeli coastal city of Tel Aviv, on March 7, 2021 ahead of the International Women's day [JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images]
Israeli women raise their clenched fists as they lie in mock coffins to represent those killed as a result of domestic violence, outside the District Court in the Israeli coastal city of Tel Aviv, on March 7, 2021 ahead of the International Women's day [JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images]

A woman or girl is being killed by someone in their family every 11 minutes in the world, UNODC Executive Director, Ghada Waly said on Thursday and Anadolu News Agency reports.

"In 2020, 47,000 women and girls worldwide died at the hands of intimate partners or other family members, according to new data released by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). Despite accounting for only one-fifth of homicide victims overall, 58 per cent of victims of intimate and family homicide are women and girls," Waly said in a statement issued on International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

Waly pointed out that data on gender-based violence remains limited in many regions, but the available evidence on the killing of women and girls at the hands of intimate partners, or other family members, shows that the situation has not improved in the past decade.

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"The COVID-19 pandemic has set women and women's rights further back, and left those vulnerable to gender-based violence with less recourse to essential support and services, and restricted access to justice," she noted.

She called on all member states to invest in evidence-based prevention of gender-based violence in line with the UN framework and the UN Joint Global Programme on Essential Services, as an investment in gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, sustainable development and an inclusive future that leaves no one behind.

She said urgent action is needed to prevent gender-based violence and safeguard the lives and rights of women and girls.

Long-term strategies to prevent gender-related killings by addressing harmful social norms that normalise violence against women must be combined with concrete and immediate measures to protect women and girls in situations of risk, especially in situations of domestic abuse, she added.

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