United Nations: A top UN official has said that the violence against women is the "most pervasive" expression of gender-based discrimination and it remains unacceptably widespread.
United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said, "Violence against women is the most pervasive expression of gender-based discrimination."
She was speaking at the UN Human Rights Council during its annual full-day discussion on women`s rights on Wednesday.
"International developments have been mirrored by efforts at the national level. Virtually all countries have taken steps to tackle violence, through specific legal frameworks, institutions and policies.
"While, we commemorate these developments we must acknowledge that violence against women remains unacceptably widespread," Pillay said.
She said that before the 1990`s, violence against women was still "largely considered a private matter and not a human rights issue of concern to the international community."
However, there was a shift in the 1990`s, she said.
"The real turning point was the 1993 Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action which recognised violence against women as an issue of international concern," said Pillay.
Pillay said International UN conferences, including Beijing in 1995, and more recently the 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women, have reaffirmed the commitment to eliminate violence through the promotion of women`s empowerment and equality in fields such as education, labor, health, and participation in all spheres of public life.