New York: Rashida Manjoo, a South African lawyer, has taken over as the new United Nations independent expert to tackle violence against women.
Manjoo, who has worked as an academic in the human rights field and a campaigner against domestic violence, succeeds Yakin Ertürk as the UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences.
She has been appointed by the UN Human Rights Council until June 2012.
"Violence against women violates human dignity, as well as numerous rights, including the right to equality, physical integrity, freedom and non-discrimination," Manjoo said in a statement.
"I believe that equality and equal protection doctrines demand that we address violence against women in all its manifestations as discrimination against women. It is my hope to work within this framework during my mandate," she said.
She has both taught and conducted research at several universities, including Webster University and Harvard Law School, in the US as well as the University of Cape Town.