Violence against women will not be eradicated tomorrow if we do not act today
Statement by Stavri Kalopsidiotou, Head of Human Rights and Freedoms Sector of the C.C. of AKEL, on International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women
25 November 2021, AKEL C.C. Press Office, Nicosia
November 25 is a day to wake society up to the most silenced and widespread form of violence exerted around the world. Despite the adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women many, many years ago, the perpetration of multiple forms of violence committed against women in all societies is one of the most brutal violations of Human Rights.
The period we are going through characterised by the triple crisis – health, economic and climate – demonstrates that gender racism remains deeply rooted and has not ceased to manifest itself in violent behaviours against women.
Without doubt, the causes and conditions that nurture gender violence, tragically culminating in femicide, the number of which is staggering in Cyprus too, are not combated through the assumption of occasional initiatives or rhetorical declarations. The adoption and implementation of comprehensive policies is urgently needed, it is everyone’s cause, but first and foremost the state’s.
AKEL will continue to work for the full and immediate implementation of all the provisions of the Istanbul Convention, rejecting the false economic obstacles and procedural delaying tactics that the Anastasiades government has been invoking for many years. Through legislative proposals and social interventions, AKEL will continue to demand an end to the incompetence of institutions in supporting victims, which was revealed through the criminal treatment of the victims in the case of the serial femicide killer Metaxas.
We shall continue to struggle for the provision of effective state assistance, in favour of systematic education of all age groups against gender stereotypes, the creation of the necessary state structures for the accommodation and support of abused women and programmes to support victims, but also schemes for the treatment/recovery of the perpetrators.
If for others it isn’t clear, for AKEL it is goes without saying that gender violence, as a criminal act, but also as a shameful expression of the multiple inequalities to which women are subjected to in our society where patriarchal attitudes still prevail, will not be eliminated tomorrow if we do not act today.