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Press Release – International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

25 November: International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

Italy confirms its strong support for the fight against all forms of discrimination and violence against women, which continues to be a grave and unacceptable barrier to women’s full enjoyment of their rights and their complete self-fulfillment. It is a priority commitment for Italy’s foreign policy that our Ministry has driven forward both through diplomatic-negotiating channels and through our development cooperation. Proof of this commitment are the many international campaigns, such as the campaign for the Elimination of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and Early and Forced Marriage, which have always seen Italy at the forefront.

On the occasion of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, our the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and its diplomatic network subscribe to the awareness-raising campaign #OrangetheWorld, promoted by UN Women, which in 2019 focuses on combatting rape – a form of gender violence that is particularly heinous and widespread. Indeed, one in three women globally have been a victim in their lifetime. The campaign will also be linked to the hashtag #GenerationEquality, which, remembering the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, invites everyone to take new important steps toward gender equality: a goal that no Country in the world, to date, can say to have reached.

In greater depth – Italy’s commitment to elimination gender-based violence

Italy is actively committed to promoting the rights of women and girls in its bilateral relations with other States, with international organizations, and in its own development cooperation programs, in order to fully achieve Sustainable Development Goal 5 of Agenda 2030. The prevention of and fight against every form of violence against women is one of the priorities of Italy’s current term in the United Nations Human Rights Council (2019-2021).

In recent days, on the occasion of the Nairobi Summit for the 25th anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development, Italy has announced new commitments within its traditional priorities: the fight against harmful practices such as female genital mutilation, and early and forced marriage; as well as fostering a reduction in maternal mortality and the emancipation of young women in the areas of sexual and reproductive health. The 2017-2020 National Strategic Plan on male violence toward women, which implements the Istanbul Convention on violence against women and domestic violence, includes important commitments in the safeguarding of women and girls.

Italy also supports international initiatives for the prevention of and fight against sexual and gender-based violence in conflict and emergency situations (including the Call to Action on Protection from Gender-Based Violence in Emergencies), as well as in development cooperation and humanitarian assistance (for example, the recommendation of OECD-DAC this year). Italy has long promoted a policy of zero tolerance policy of sexual abuse of exploitation committed by military and civilian personnel deployed on United Nations’ peace missions.