2008-12-10 | News
Round Table Discussing Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) in Armenia

Today, on the 10th of December, a Round Table on the report on survey findings on ‘Sexual and Gender Based Violence among Female Refugees and Asylum Seekers in Armenia’ is organized at Marriott Armenia Hotel in Yerevan.

The survey, initiated by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Armenia and carried out by the Turpanjian Policy Analysis Center of the American University of Armenia, with the financial support of the European Commission, aims at identifying SGBV among female refugees and asylum seekers and understanding its forms and prevalence during and after their flight to Armenia.

The round table, organised by the Women’s Rights Centre NGO, will discuss the SGBV survey, and based on the findings in the survey as well as the presentations of experts, the participants will come forward with recommendations to jointly address SGBV among female refugees and asylum seekers in Armenia and to find efficient ways to respond to and prevent sexual and gender based violence in Armenia.

Sexual and gender based violence is a pervasive problem affecting women and girls around the world - among them innumerable refugees and asylum seekers who flee their homes in fear and anxiety. The prevention of and response to SGBV deserves the closest attention of each and every one – from individuals to communities, from states to local and international organizations. The annual 16 Days of Activism against Gender Based Violence started on 25 November with the International Day to Eliminate Violence against Women, and will end today, on 10 December with International Human Rights Day.

During the past 16 days, UNHCR offices around the world organized events and activities to raise awareness and demonstrate their commitment to the elimination of SGBV. A positive step in 2008 that puts the prevention of and response to sexual violence at the level of an obligation, is the recognition of sexual violence as a self-standing security issue by the Security Council, for the first time in its history - a historical milestone at the international level.

At the end of the round table, participants will be invited to join UNHCR’s worldwide initiative called “Hands United against Harm”. Handprints of all participants will be placed on a pledge wall, to demonstrate their commitment against gender based violence.

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