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United Nations Focuses on Global Violence against Women

The United Nations (UN) kicked of a 16-day campaign to raise awareness about violence against women with the observance of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on November 25. At a press conference held Friday, Noleen Heyzer, Executive Director of the UN Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), reported that domestic violence laws are increasing around the world with 89 nations having enacted provisions to address domestic violence.

Stressing the need for implementation of the laws, Heyzer announced that UNIFEM will be providing $3.5 million in grants to groups in 20 nations working to stop domestic violence. According to a statement released by the UN, the grants, which will be distributed by the UN Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women, amount to the largest sum ever disbursed by the Fund. A statement released by the UN said that the grants will support “efforts to implement new laws or policies through activities like the training of judges, lawyers and police; pushing for greater budgetary resources; raising public awareness; and strengthening capacity among civil groups so they can better demand accountability.”
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Sources:

UN News 11/23/06; UNIFEM news release 11/22/06; UNIFEM Press Conference statement 11/22/06; UN News 11/24/06

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