New York, 16 March (AFP / AP) – 131 countries have signed the UN Charter that condemns violence against women and girls, and calls for the protection and promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms. The agreement on the text of 17 pages comes after the strong objections of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, which had rejected the paper this week calling it contrary to Islam and against the family. The representative of Egypt, however, signed the document by going against the will of the Islamists. Michelle Bachelet, UN Women agency’s director, described the historical document because it sets global standards to prevent and put an end to “one of the most serious violations of human rights in the world, the violence committed against women and girls.” The Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, said through his spokesman to “hope that all partners who have come to this historic session, and others around the world, now transfer the agreement into concrete action.” The document, in fact, is not binding.
According to UN figures, seven out of 10 women suffer violence in their lifetime and while 125 countries have specific laws to prosecute domestic violence, 603 million women live in countries that do not consider it a crime.
In the text of the document states that the signatories “condemn in the strongest terms the pervasive violence against women and girls, calling for greater attention and acceleration to prevent and respond.” Among the priorities of the paper are the creation of a variety of services in support of survivors of violence, including in the fields of health, psychological help and counseling. Also provides for the protection of the right to sexual and reproductive health and calls for putting an end to impunity of perpetrators of violent crimes. It also states that men and women have the right to equal human rights, urging governments on issues of sex education, contraception and abortion services as for victims of violence. What is missing, however, any reference to sexual orientation and gender identity.