The Violence Against Women Monitor by jianglifang


									                                                                                          The VAW Monitor p. 1

                        Stop Violence Against Women Website

                        The Violence Against Women Monitor
                        A publication of Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights

                                                                                                December 2004

                                Expanding the Reach of STOPVAW
    Two Peace Corps volunteers serving in Ukraine and Kyrgyzstan have put the extensive
     resources of the Stop Violence Against Women website to good use in their work with
                       women s NGOs dedicated to anti-violence efforts.

Jennifer Nader works in Kherson, Ukraine at the            out Ukraine.
 Successful Woman NGO, a four-year old organi-
zation providing a wide variety of services for vic-       In addition,
tims of trafficking and violence: crisis hotline, anony-    Successful
mous consultations, self-help groups, legal and psy-       Woman will use
chological consultations, shelter (the first in southern   the film and the
Ukraine), and trainings on violence prevention,            training modules to
women s leadership and job skills. Successful              conduct trainings      Volunteers Oksana Popova and
Woman served 2,413 clients in 2003.                        on domestic vio-       Sveta scrape old paint off of the
                                                           lence in educational shelter s windows.
The organization is concerned about the lack of            institutions and pub-
official documentation of domestic violence in             lic spaces, such as libraries, in Kherson, Chaplinka,
Ukraine, and has received a Democracy Grant from           Belozerka, Nova Kahovka, Kahovka, Skadovsk,
the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine to produce a docu-             Siropinsk, and Gola Printan. They will also train
mentary film for a public education campaign on the        trainers from Winrock In-
subject. The goal of the campaign is two-fold: to          ternational s Woman for        In This Issue
educate the general public in Ukraine about the            Woman centers in Rovno,
causes and effects of domestic violence, and to            Lviv, Kharkiv, Chernivtsi,         STOPVAW
make women who may be victims of domestic vio-             Zhitomer and Donetsk,
                                                                                              News, p. 1
lence aware of the services available to help them         who can then provide fur-
in their local communities.                                ther trainings throughout
                                                           their regions.                     National VAW
 Successful Woman has also collaborated with                                                  Monitor Pro-
Minnesota Advocates to translate all the domestic          Jessica Nowlin works in            gram News, pp.
violence training modules on the Stop Violence             Sustainable Economic and           3-4
Against Women website (                    Organizational Develop-
Domestic_Violence__Training_Materials.html) into           ment with the Sezim Crisis
                                     Russian and           Center for Women in Bish-
                                     Ukrainian.            kek, Kyrgyzstan. The               and Regional
                                     When the film         Sezim Center provides              News, pp. 5-11
                                     and the trans-        hotline and counseling
                                     lations of the        services for victims of vio-       National News,
                                     training mod-         lence and trafficking, legal       p. 12-14
                                     ules are com-         and psychological consul-
                                     pleted, they will     tations, a newsletter, and 7
                                     be distributed        consulting centers in Chui
                                                                                              New Research
Karl Beck, Peace Corps Country       to 200 NGOs           and Issyk-Kul Regions that         and Reports,
director; Luidmila Kumpan, Shelter   and educa-            conduct seminars for               pp. 15
Director; Jennifer Nader, Peace      tional institu-       women and men, including
Corps Volunteer; Ira, shelter staff; tions through-
shelter residents
                                                           (Continued on page 11)             Calendar p. 18
                                                                                       December 2004, Issue 4
p.2 The VAW Monitor

         Minnesota Advocates Staff                           Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights
Mary Hunt, Program Associate                                             The mission of Minnesota Advocates for
Rosalyn Park, Staff Attorney                                             Human Rights ( is
                                                                         to implement international human rights
Robin Phillips, Executive Director                                       standards to promote civil society and
Christine Tefft, Staff Attorney                           reinforce the rule of law. Minnesota Advocates was
Cheryl Thomas, Women s Program Director                   founded in 1983 by a group of Minnesota lawyers who
                                                          recognized the community s unique spirit of social jus-
                                                          tice as an opportunity to promote and protect human
Interns and Volunteers                                    rights here at home and worldwide. We are a non-
Lilo Bayati, Elizabeth Braun, Jeremy Goyette,             profit, volunteer-based organization that investigates
Katharine Horowitz, Julia Kashaeva, Jennifer Mo-          and exposes human rights violations; represents immi-
jica, Mary Mullen, Angela Neska, Tatyana Wentler          grants and refugees in our community who are human
                                                          rights victims; trains and assists groups that protect
     Electronic Version of the VAW Monitor                human rights; and works through education and advo-
        Available on STOPVAW Website                      cacy in Minnesota to engage the public, policymakers
                                                          and children about human rights and cultural under-
The VAW Monitor is an electronic newsletter which is      standing. Minnesota Advocates holds Special Consul-
delivered on the first of each month, The VAW Monitor     tative Status with the United Nations.
provides updates on the STOPVAW website, informa-
tion from the National VAW Monitor Program, com-          The Women s Human Rights Program at Minnesota
mentary from experts on violence against women, in-       Advocates works to improve the lives of women by
ternational, regional and national news, as well as up-   using international human rights standards to advocate
dates on new reports and books. This newsletter is        for women's rights in the United States and internation-
free. Please visit                       ally through research, education and advocacy initia-
The_VAW_Monitor.html to subscribe to the VAW              tives. The Program s development of the Stop Vio-
Monitor or to obtain an archived copy.                    lence Against Women website represents a continua-
                                                          tion of the Women s Program s research, education
                                                          and advocacy activities over the last ten years.
                 About STOPVAW
The Stop Violence Against Women website                              Network Women s Program
( is a forum for information, advo-
cacy and change. Minnesota Advocates for Human                         The Network Women s Program (NWP) of the
Rights developed this website as a tool for the promo-                 Open Society Institute (
tion of women's human rights in the countries of Cen-                  women) works to promote the advancement of
tral and Eastern Europe (CEE) and the Common-                          women s human rights, gender equality, and
wealth of Independent States (CIS), Mongolia, and the                  empowerment as an integral part of the proc-
U.N. Protectorate of Kosovo. STOPVAW was devel-           ess of democratization. The program operates worldwide
oped with support from and in consultation with the       as a consultative and operational program, working di-
Open Society Institute's Network Women's Program          rectly with and providing technical assistance to entities
                                                          inside the Soros foundations network on gender issues.
and the United Nations Development Fund for
                                                          Among the program's focus areas are gender sensitive
Women (UNIFEM). This website addresses violence
                                                          education, violence against women, young women s hu-
against women as one of the most pervasive human          man rights, mass media and gender policy, equal opportu-
rights abuses worldwide. STOPVAW provides                 nities in the EU accession process, women s oral histo-
women's rights advocates with information                 ries, Romani women s leadership, information initiatives,
and advocacy tools focused on ending the most en-         women s health, and women in conflict zones. NWP has
demic forms of violence against women in the region,      supported the development of the Stop Violence Against
including domestic violence, sexual assault, sexual       Women website and the related National Violence Against
harassment and trafficking in persons.                    Women Monitor Program. For more information about
                                                          this program, please visit:
For more information about STOPVAW, please con- 
tact the Website Administrator at

To learn how you can support STOPVAW and its advocacy for women s rights around the world, please
email us at
Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization.
December 2004, Issue 4
                                                                                         The VAW Monitor p. 3

                              National VAW Monitor Program News
            Presentation of the STOPVAW website and National VAW Monitor Program
On 25 November 2004, a presentation on the Stop           OSIAFA Education and
Violence Against Women (StopVAW) website and              Women s Program Co-
National VAW Monitor program took place in the            ordinator Ms. Armine
United Nations House in Yerevan. The presentation         Tadevosyan thanked
marked the beginning of a series of events by the         the participants of the
Women s Rights Center (WRC) in the framework of           presentation and called
the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Vio-         for continued coopera-
lence. The project is being realized in Armenia with      tion to keep the website
the financial support of the Network Women s Pro-         content both interesting Commemoration of the Inter-
gram and Open Society Institute Assistance Foun-          and informative.         national Day for the Elimina-
dation Armenia.                                                                      tion of Violence Against
                                                          The participants also      Women United Nations
Eighteen representatives of thirteen International        welcomed the creation      House in Yerevan press
                               and local NGOs deal-       of the STOPVAW web-        conference. Left to right: Mr.
                                                                                     Eduard Grigoryan, Ms. Lise
                               ing with violence          site, emphasizing its
                                                                                     Grande, Ms. Alice Adamyan,
                               against women par-         importance in the strug-   Ms. Susanna Vardanyan.
                               ticipated in the pres-     gle to end violence
                               entation.                  against women.

                              The presentation fea-       The President of the WRC stated that the main aim
                              tured the welcome           of the project is to create an exhaustive source of
                              speeches of Ms. Lise        information at on the issue while
                              Grande, U.N. Resi-          increasing the cooperation of NGOs dealing with
Presentation on the Stop Vio-
lence Against Women           dent Coordinator and        violence against women; this will, in turn, increase
(STOPVAW) website and         U.N. Development            both society and the corresponding structures atten-
National VAW Monitor pro-     Program (UNDP)              tion to the problem and thus help in the development
gram. United Nations House    Resident Representa-        of new remedies.
in Yerevan.                   tive in Armenia, Ms.
                              Armine Tadevosyan,          The WRC also presented the idea of creating of a
the Open Society Institute Assistance Foundation          National Network for violence against women for
(OSIAFA) - Armenia Education and Women s Pro-             discussion. The participants of the presentation wel-
grams Coordinator, and Ms. Susanna Vardanyan,             comed the creation of such a structure and ex-
the President of the WRC.                                 pressed their readiness to participate. They made a
                                                          preliminary decision to meet in the second half of
Ms. Lise Grande spoke of the great importance of          January of the next year to discuss the organiza-
the initiative and her hopes that it will assist in im-   tional issues.
proving the situation of violence against women.

    International Seminar Active Participation of Young Women Special Focus on Gender
                             Equality Begins in Baku, Azerbaijan
On 26 November 2004, the international seminar            interactive games and join discussions focusing
 Active Participation of Young Women Special              on the obstacles women face when trying to in-
Focus on Gender Equality will begin in Baku,              crease public involvement. The conference is being
Azerbaijan.                                               organized by the groups Women s Youth Center
                                                           Shams from Azerbaijan, Youth for Exchange and
The main aim of the seminar is to facilitate the ex-      Understanding from Lithuania and Estonia, and
change of cross-cultural strategies and experi-           the Youth Movement Kmara from Georgia. It will
ence in order to strengthen young women s roles           also include participants from Azerbaijan, Georgia,
both socially and politically within their coun-          the Russian Federation, Latvia, Lithuania and Esto-
tries. During the seminar, participants will have the     nia. The seminar is funded through the efforts of
opportunity to meet regional experts, take part in        the European Youth Foundation.
                                                                                      December 2004, Issue 4
p.4 The VAW Monitor

                             National VAW Monitor Program News
                              Silent Witnesses in Slovakia for the First Time
(Submitted by Jana Olearnikova, Fenestra) The na-           sult of domestic violence in Slovakia, was much
tional two-year One-In-Five-Women campaign com-             higher. Accurate statistics are not available, as such
bated violence against women. Due to this campaign,         data is not monitored in
the Slovak society has acknowledged the existence of        Slovakia.
violence against women and its extent. The recogni-
tion of the devastating consequences of violence            The theatre performance
against women is yet to be realized. Also to be             told the story of a woman
achieved is the recognition that society and its rele-      murdered by her husband
vant institutions play an important role in stopping the    after years of physical,
violence. The Silent Witnesses exhibition strives to        psychological and eco-        Photo: Andrej Ban
achieve this awareness.                                     nomic abuse. The story        There were fifteen live-size
                                                            illustrates the myths and     silhouettes of women ex-
According to the Slovak police statistics, 79% of vio-      prejudice that influences     hibited.
lent criminal acts take place among close persons. In       the way people think of
95% of all cases, women and children are the victims.       and treat the victims of violence, as well as women in
Unfortunately, when a woman is murdered by her              general. The theatre performance was inspired by the
significant other, it is not seen in the context of long-   true story of an abused woman that was told in the
term abuse. The situation is still one where attempts       One-In-Five-Women campaign. The script also con-
to get help are largely inefficient and unsuccessful.       tained authentic statements of the police, judges and
However, it is possible to assess these risks, act and      physicians taken from Fenestra database. Both pro-
prevent them from happening. Both theory and ex-            fessional actresses and Fenestra volunteers played in
perience clearly define the dynamics of violence: if the    the performance, as well as Mirek Vodrazka, Czech
violence cycle is not interrupted from the outside, the     feminist philosopher and Helena Zaoralova, Czech
frequency of attacks rises, as well as the seriousness      mezzo-soprano. A documentary of this performance
of injuries and threats. This kind of violence inevitably   is available on DVD and video.
causes permanent damage on victim s health and
wellbeing and may even result in death.                      0 in 2020 is the initiative. It is mission of the initiative
                                                            to promote successful community strategies and pro-
The first Silent Witnesses exhibition in Slovakia was       jects focusing on the elimination of domestic violence
organized by the Interest Association of Women              and violence against women. The goal is to reach
Fenestra on 18 June 2004 in the Main Square in              zero homicides resulting from domestic violence until
Kosice. The exhibition was accompanied by street            2020.
theatre performances of Babske Mysteria (Women s
Mysteries). Ms. Iveta Skripkova, the director, chose        The initiative will provide outlines and training informa-
the genre of medieval mysteries. These mysteries            tion on how to organize the exhibition for state, pri-
are dramatized biblical stories that usually took place     vate, profit and non-profit institutions and organiza-
in front of churches and were designed to clarify the       tions in various Slovak towns. The exhibition can take
message of biblical stories to people who did not un-       place in many different surroundings. For example, it
derstand the Latin mass. It was the first event of this     can be held in open-air or indoor areas, on the prem-
kind in Slovakia, and we consider it the beginning of a     ises of public institutions (e.g. the Parliament), in front
                              national initiative.          of private enterprises and companies, and in
                                                            churches. In 2005, one of the places the Silent Wit-
                            There were fifteen live-        nesses exhibition will take place will be in the U.S.
                            size silhouettes of women       Steel Kosice Gallery, where 25,000 employees of the
                            exhibited. The text at-         U.S. Steel Kosice will have the opportunity to see the
                            tached to the silhouettes       exhibition. For further information, see also
                            told the stories of Slovak
                            women murdered in 2000
 Photo: Andrej Ban
                           and 2003 as a result of          (The first Silent Witnesses March ever was organized
violence. These stories were the few that caught the        on 18th January 1991 in Minnesota, U.S.A.)
attention of the Slovak media. Due to this, we assume
that the actual number of women murdered, as a re-
December 2004, Issue 4
                                                                                         The VAW Monitor p. 5

                             National VAW Monitor Program News
                          Slovakia Represented in European Women s Lobby
(The Slovak Women s Lobby) On 17-18 October                5. To promote women s human rights in the area
2004, the European Women s Lobby (EWL) Gen-                of reproductive rights in compliance with the U.N.
eral Assembly meeting took place in Brussels. For          Program of Action on Population and Development
the first time, the Slovak Women s Lobby took part         (ICPD, 1994) and the European Parliament Resolu-
in the meeting as a full member.                           tion on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights;
                                                           6. To support the introduction of the mainstream-
EWL coordinates the national and international             ing principle and gender practices and analysis into
women s NGOs in the E.U. with more than 4,000              life; and
member organizations. Its main objective is to en-         7. To promote the needs and perspectives of dif-
force gender equality and to mediate cooperation           ferent groups of women suffering from multiple
among women s NGOs and politicians.                        forms of discrimination; and
                                                           8. To take into consideration the attitudes and
The Slovak Women s Lobby (SWL) came into exis-             views of women suffering multiple discrimination,
tence upon agreement by twenty-seven women s               especially with regard to age, race, ethnicity, relig-
NGOs. The first congress took place on 6 October           ion, sexual orientation, physical handicaps, and
2004 in Bratislava.                                        women with refugee and immigrant status living in
The main objectives of the SWL are:
1. To support the elimination of gender stereo-            Olga Pietruchova of Moznost Volby (Pro Choice
types in all areas of both public and private life, with   Slovakia) has been elected as Chairwoman of SWL.
an emphasis on education and work-life balance;            The following representatives of women s NGOs
2. To support equal representation of women and            throughout Slovakia constitute members of the
men on various levels of economic, social and politi-      Board: Andrea Buckova of Kulturne zdruzenie Ro-
cal life;                                                  mov Slovenska (Cultural Association of Slovak
3. To promote the elimination of all forms of vio-         Roma), Daniela Bzuseková of Zdruzenie ien v pod-
lence against women and to create means of effi-           nikaní (Association of Women in Business), Zuzana
cient and professional help for victims of violence        Kiczkova of Centrum rodových studii (Gender Stud-
against women;                                             ies Centre), Anna Murinova of Profesionalne zeny
4. To enforce the principle of equal opportunity           (Professional Women), Adriana Mesochortisova of
and principles focusing on strengthening the posi-         Esfem and Eva Mladeková of Profesionalne zeny
tion of women in all areas of life, especially in the      (Professional Women).
legislative processes;

     National Strategy on the Elimination and Prevention of Violence against Women and in
                 Families Correction the Slovak Women s Lobby First Success
(Adopted from the materials of Slovak Women s              lives. We believe that the strategy insufficiently
Lobby and Esfem.) The Ministry of Labor, Social            applies the human rights principles to which Slo-
Affairs and Family of the Slovak Republic pro-             vakia is obligated to comply.
posed the National Strategy on the Elimination of
Violence against Women and in Families in Octo-            Therefore, the NGO's associated in the Slovak
ber 2004. For three years, we had been waiting             Women s Lobby submitted objections to this
for a strategy that would open up opportunities for        Strategy by the Ministry of Labor, Social Affairs
providing help to women exposed to violence.               and Family. In a meeting with junior representa-
However, we consider the proposed material                 tives of the Ministry on 25 October 2004, the
non-conceptual since condensing different issues           women s organizations were represented by
into one strategy hinders the provision of mean-           Katarina Minarovicova and Monika Bosa. A few of
ingful assistance to all victims of violence. More-        the SWL s objections were accepted, and are re-
over, we believe that the Strategy drafters have           garded as a success.
not taken into consideration the various forms of
violence against women and have failed to pay              We are rather concerned about the strategy pro-
adequate attention to the diversity of women s                                                (Continued on page 19)

                                                                                      December 2004, Issue 4
p.6 The VAW Monitor

                             National VAW Monitor Program News
                                        Legislative Trends in Tajikistan
Following the civil war in Tajikistan, women have be-       Office, the high court of RT and the Ministry of Jus-
come the main object of violence. From 1998 1999,           tice. They elaborated a draft law on human trafficking
the World Health Organization (WHO), in cooperation         and added a supplemental article into the criminal
with the donor organization Swiss Development               code. On 15 July 2004, the President signed into law
Agency, the Women in Development Bureau, and                the bill on human trafficking. This law addresses the
the NGO Open Asia, has investigated the spread of           legal and judicial aspects of human trafficking in the
violence against women in RT. The results of this           Republic of Tajikistan.
investigation were published at the national confer-
ence Violence against women in 2000. Recommen-              The law includes seven chapters:
dations were elaborated at this conference, which           1. General statements
also identified further work to counter violence            2. Organization basis against human traffic
against women.                                              3. Preventive measures against human traffic
                                                            4. Specialized institutions to support and help traffick-
The Government of the Republic of Tajikistan has               ing victims
created a program called The main directions of             5. Social rehabilitation and protection of trafficking
state politic in ensuring equal rights and abilities of        victims
men and women in RT in 2001- 2010. Chapter 7                6. International cooperation of RT in struggle against
sets forth the actions the program is to take. The             human traffic
Women and Family Committee of the government of             7. Conclusive statements
the Republic of Tajikistan is the national coordinator
of this program. In cooperation with donor organiza-        Chapter 17 (Crimes against private freedom, honest
tions, a network, which is to establish strategic steps     and dignity) of the criminal code establishes the pun-
toward the realization of the seventh item of the state     ishment for trafficking in persons (Article 130.1)
program. The network includes the NGOs Women                    from five to eight years imprisonment (Part 1)
center, Bovari, Hamroz, Mehrafruz, Dilafruz, as well            from eight to twelve years imprisonment (Part 2)
as the governmental Women and Family Committee.                 from twelve to fifteen years imprisonment (Part 3)
The Women and Family Committee is responsible for
the execution of the mandate. The network is to sup-        Article 132 punishes the recruitment of people for
port the creation of crisis centers to provide victims of   exploitation and punishes this crime by:
violence with psychological, legal and medical help.             Up to two years imprisonment (Part 1)
Currently, functioning centers include the consulting            From two to five years imprisonment (Part 2)
center Bovari in Dushanbe city at the Women and                  From five to twelve years imprisonment (Part 3)
family committee , the crisis center Bovari at the
NGO Women s center in Kurgan Tube, the crisis               Chapter 18 punishes crimes against sexual freedom
center Gulrukhsor in Khujand, the crisis center Na-         and sexual inviolability Rape is punished under Arti-
joti kudakon in Kulob and the crisis center Bovari in       cle 138 by:
Kurgan Tube.                                                    from three to seven years imprisonment (Part 1)
                                                                from seven to twelve years imprisonment (Part 2)
Through monitoring calls and conducting consulta-               from twelve to twenty-five years imprisonment or
tions, it was found that 70% of women suffer from               capital punishment (Part 3)
domestic violence. The extent of violence appears to
be impacted by the civil war, which caused the col-
lapse of education and culture levels and made                  Declaration on Gender Equality of the
women more economically dependent.                                    Municipality of Podgorica
                                                            Based on Article 52 of the Rules of Procedure of
In the period from January 1998 to October 2004, the        the Municipality of Podgorica and in accordance
NGO Modar has examined the trafficking of women             with the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human
and children in Tajikistan and has facilitated a semi-      Rights and the Convention on Elimination of all
nar on the judicial and legal aspects of protecting         forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW),
women from violence. It resulted in the creation of an      the City Assembly of Podgorica adopted the Decla-
expert group from the deputies of parliament (Majlisi       ration on Gender Equality during its January 2004
Oli), head workers from the General Prosecutor s            session.
December 2004, Issue 4
                                                                                             The VAW Monitor p. 7

                                  International and Regional News
     Violence Against Women Will Continue Unless its Roots in Gender Discrimination and
                             Inequality Seriously Addressed
Real solution lies in dealing head on with root causes, which include women's poor economic, social and
political status, and unequal access to justice, says UNIFEM Executive Director Noeleen Heyzer

                          United Nations, New York -         sion of justice, and that women participate in shaping
                          Addressing a United Nations        justice frameworks and rule of law institutions.
                          Security Council Open De-
                          bate on "Women, Peace and          Ms Heyzer pointed to the effective measures which
                          Security," Noeleen Heyzer,         already exist in many post-conflict countries, such as
                          Executive Director of the UN       normative standards, legal frameworks and mecha-
Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), empha-                  nisms for enforcing rights and redressing violations.
sized that any real solutions to eliminating violence        "The challenge now," she said, "is to ensure the im-
against women must derive from a concerted attack            plementation and replication of the good laws that
on its origins -- deeply rooted, historical patterns of      many countries have already developed. The inter-
discrimination against women and systemic gender             national community must work closely with and pro-
inequalities that are pervasive both in peacetime as         vide the necessary support to national stakeholders."
well as during conflict.
                                                             "As we work towards ending the impunity for gender
"The international community is now fully aware that         crimes that prevails in post-conflict societies, it is im-
rape and other forms of violence against women are           perative to ensure that those responsible for crimes
systematically deployed, with the cruelest effect, as a      against women are not rewarded with state power
weapon of war," she said. "However, gender-based             and high profile jobs as a result of negotiated peace
violence during conflict is but part of the continuum of     agreements. Justice and accountability are crucial to
violence that runs through women's lives, from times         any peace, and healing, process."
of peace to times of war. It only deepens with war.
Discrimination and gender inequality are seeds that,         She described three issues that were highlighted in
during wartime, become a bitter fruit that destroys          particular at a recent conference on Gender Justice
the fabric of communities and the lives of women             in Post-Conflict Situations, convened by UNIFEM
and their families."                                         and the International Legal Assistance Consortium
Ms Heyzer referred to the critical opportunity that               The participation of women, and the incorpora-
post-conflict reconstruction presents for establishing       tion of gender dimensions must be increased in all
justice and the rule of law for women -- including           stages of the conceptualization, planning and imple-
constitutions with strong and clear guarantees of            mentation of UN peace operations;
gender equality, legal reforms that ensure equality in
                                                                  UN peacekeeping and humanitarian personnel
marriage and family relations, in property ownership
                                                             have a special obligation not to violate the trust
and in access to secure jobs and livelihoods. Ending
                                                             placed in them by women and girls. Because serious
violence against women requires all of these things,
                                                             criminal sexual misconduct has been identified with
she stressed, as well as on support for women's par-
                                                             UN personnel as well as other international person-
ticipation in elections as voters and candidates, and
                                                             nel, gender justice must extend to these international
on their equal representation in all facets of govern-
                                                             guardians as well;
ment. Gender justice and the rule of law rely upon
"judicial processes that fully ensure and protect                 Gender justice must be prioritized within the UN
women's entitlements on a basis of equality with             system, including peace operations, and institutional
men."                                                        arrangements must be strengthened to accelerate
Gender justice, she explained, can serve to remove
discrimination against women by upholding and en-            "It has taken more than two decades for women's
forcing women's rights, thereby directly addressing          voices to be seriously heard, a decade to establish
the origins of violence. To make gender justice an           the normative and legal frameworks for gender jus-
integral element of the rule of law, it is imperative that   tice in order to remove violence against women and
gender perspectives be integrated into every dimen-                                                (Continued on page 19)

                                                                                          December 2004, Issue 4
p.8 The VAW Monitor

                         International and Regional News, continued
                    UN Security Council Urges Increased Effort to Protect Women
                After finishing a full day of debate on      for support programs for victims of gender-based
                women, peace and security, the Secu-         violence.
                rity Council called on the U.N. to put       One of the purposes of the debate was to measure
                forth a comprehensive effort to end          progress made since the Council adopted a resolu-
                violence against women and girls in          tion in 2000 decrying gender-based violence, and
war. The Security Council is also urging the U.N. to         called for a reorganization in the planning of peace
give women a stronger voice and position during the          and security operations in order to ensure that
post-conflict peace processes.                               women s perspectives were always included. The
                                                             Executive Director of the U.N. Population Fund has
The Council released a presidential statement ask-           described international response as completely in-
ing Secretary-General Kofi Annan to outline a plan           adequate and said that most of the progress made
by October 2005 showing how the U.N. can achieve             since 2000 has been in the creation of policies and
these goals. Ambassador Emyr Jones Parry of the              guidelines and not on the ground where girls and
United Kingdom said the plan of action would in-             women continue to face violence. The Under-
clude a timetable for implementing specific goals,           Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations
such as the elimination of gender-based violence             said that despite the challenges still being faced, the
and an increase in women s participation in peace-           U.N. has been working harder since 2000 to include
keeping operations. The statement also urged the             the needs and perspectives of women in its opera-
Secretary-General to identify female candidates for          tions.
positions in peacekeeping, conflict prevention, and
humanitarian operations; called for the elimination of       Compiled from: Security Council urges stepped-up efforts
impunity for perpetrators of violence against women          to protect women from violence in war, UN News Centre,
and girls in war; recommended specific training for          28 October 2004.
all staff involved in conflict or post-conflict operations
in order to increase recognition and response to             Security Council Press Release SC/8230, 28 October
gender-based violence; and emphasized the need

   INSTRAW to Track Global Progress Made on Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action
              In preparation for the 49th Session of         out in the Beijing PfA.
              the Commission on the Status of
              Women in March 2005, United Na-                The 12 critical areas include: women and poverty;
              tions International Research and               education and training; women and health; vio-
              Training Institute for the Advancement         lence against women; women and armed conflict;
of Women (INSTRAW) will attempt to track the                 women and the economy; women in power and
global progress made on the achievement of the               decision making; institutional mechanisms for the
12 Critical Areas (and associated strategic objec-           advancement of women; human rights of women;
tives) set forth in the Beijing Declaration and Plat-        women and the media; women and the environ-
form for Action (PfA). Such analysis, 10 years after         ment; and the girl child.
the inception of the Beijing platform, will allow IN-
STRAW to assess the progress made on the PfA                 INSTRAW s website ( will in-
and its implementation, and identify persistent and          clude reports on each of the 12 Critical Areas, and
future obstacles in achieving gender equality.               a list of specific resources related to that issue, in-
                                                             cluding materials, news items, and UN and other
This review process should give INSTRAW insight              commitments and declarations. These resources
into global and national commitments to the Decla-           will be uploaded as they become available. The
ration, as demonstrated by participation of high-            first report, on Women and Armed Conflict, is avail-
level actors in the 49th session of the CSW, the             able now.
production of national and global-level reports by
governments, civil society, and international or-            Compiled from: STOPVAW website, United Nations
ganizations, and the availability (or lack) of data          International Research and Training Institute and Train-
and indicators related to the 12 Critical Areas set          ing Institute on the Advancement of Women, 2004.

December 2004, Issue 4
                                                                                        The VAW Monitor p. 9

                       International and Regional News, continued
 Council of Europe: Recommendations for a                   of Europe;
               Plan of Action                               Commits the Council of Europe to articulate and
                                                            publish action strategies on priority thematic
News Release Issued by the International Secre-             issues and to ensure better implementation of
tariat of Amnesty International                             human rights standards, including the European
AI Index: IOR 61/025/2004 10 November 2004                  Convention on Human Rights and the Euro-
Public Statement                                            pean Social Charter and Revised Social Char-
On the eve of his assuming the Chair of the Coun-           ter, in each of the 46 Council of Europe Member
cil of Europe's Committee of Ministers, Amnesty             States;
International has sent a Memorandum to the Polish           Commits to enhancing coordination and coop-
Minister of Foreign Affairs outlining the organiza-         eration between the Council of Europe and the
tion's recommendations for the Council of Europe's          other international organizations, most notably
Third Summit of Heads of State and Government,              the European Union (EU), the Organization for
scheduled to take place in Warsaw, Poland on 16-            Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE)
17 May 2005.                                                and the United Nations (UN), with the aim of
                                                            achieving more effective implementation of the
Amnesty International considers that the Third              international human rights treaties by Council of
Summit of the Council of Europe presents an im-             Europe Member States;
portant opportunity for the Council of Europe to            Considers, in particular, the opportunities and
reaffirm its existing aims and mission, celebrate its       challenges presented by the possible future
accomplishments and articulate a plan of action,            accession of the expanded European Union as
with measurable objectives, for its future work and         a party to the European Convention on Human
functioning.                                                Rights;
                                                            Commits to pursuing the possibilities of organiz-
In particular in the memorandum, Recommenda-                ing a pan-European campaign against Domes-
tions for the Council of Europe's Third Summit of           tic Violence, as recommended by the Parlia-
Heads of State and Government (AI Index: IOR                mentary Assembly of the Council of Europe;
61/023/2004) Amnesty International urges the                Develops plans to enhance transparency of the
Committee of Ministers to ensure that the Third             Council of Europe activities for the some 800
Summit:                                                     million people living in its member states and to
    Includes an event at which States, who have
    yet to do so, can sign up as parties to a number                                          (Continued on page 19)
    of treaties which represent particularly topical
    and important aims of the Council of Europe to:
    eradicate racism and other forms of discrimina-       European Parliament is Divided on Turkey
    tion which continue to plague the region;
                                                         The European Parliament will hold a vote on Tur-
    truly establish the Council of Europe region as
                                                         key s bid to join the European Union. There exist
    a death penalty-free zone;
                                                         deep divisions within the parliament regarding Tur-
    bolster the functioning of the European Court of
                                                         key s possible accession to the EU, with many
    Human Rights;
                                                         members of the parliament s largest faction (the
    affirm the commitment to the fight against ter-      EPP) strongly opposed to opening accession nego-
    rorism in a manner that protects and respects        tiations. The president of the European Parliament,
    the human rights of all persons;                     Josep Borrell, will travel to Turkey to deliver the
    ensure enhanced respect for the human rights         verdict. Mr. Borrell announced that the vote will
    of trafficked persons.                               precede the Council s decision on opening negotia-
    Commits its 46 Member States and the Council         tions with Turkey in December. He is calling for a
    of Europe itself to prioritizing the effective im-    lively European debate and thinks it appropriate
    plementation of existing human rights stan-          for the EU s only directly elected body to express its
    dards;                                               opinions and conclusions. A vote on Turkey is ex-
    Reviews, and where appropriate, addresses the        pected to take place on December 2.
    need for additional resources to support and
    enhance the effectiveness of the work of the full    Compiled from: Parliament President to deliver verdict on
    range of bodies and mechanisms of the Council        Turkey,, 4 November 2004.

                                                                                      December 2004, Issue 4
p.10 The VAW Monitor

                        International and Regional News, continued
                           Violence Against Women Fuels Spread of HIV/AIDS
             (News Release Issued by the Interna-            thought to have HIV/AIDS, who have "disappeared",
             tional Secretariat of Amnesty Interna-          been persecuted or killed.
             AI Index: ACT 77/087/2004 24 Novem-             "In many parts of the world stigma blocks the way for
             ber 2004                                        women to access appropriate medical health care and
             Violence against women fuels spread of          leads to the exclusion of women from families or com-
             HIV/AIDS                                        munities," said Amnesty International.
             Significantly more young women than men
are now being infected by HIV/AIDS as violence               Where women are denied property and inheritance
against women and girls fuels the spread of the virus.       rights, employment and access to finance, they are
HIV/AIDS is a human rights catastrophe which in-             forced into dependence on men which places them in
creasingly affects women, said Amnesty International         a very weak position to assert their rights and protect
in the report Women, HIV/AIDS and human rights pub-          themselves from violence. Many women and girls also
lished ahead of the International Day for the Elimina-       lack awareness of measures required for self-
tion of Violence Against Women.                              protection from HIV/AIDS. In Ethiopia, for example,
                                                             some 80% of married young women have had no edu-
"The increasing spread of HIV/AIDS among women               cation and are unable to read. Ensuring access to edu-
and sexual violence are interlinked. If governments are      cation including awareness raising about sex, health
serious in their fight against the disease they also have    and HIV/Aids is fundamental to protecting the right of
to deal with another worldwide "pandemic": violence          girls and women.
against women," said Amnesty International.
                                                             "Discrimination and unequal power relations make it
Violence is a key factor in women s risk of contracting      more difficult for women and girls to control their lives
the virus. Studies suggest that the first sexual experi-     and their own sexuality, including negotiating safer
ence of a girl will often be forced and we know that one     sex. Women must be empowered to act effectively in
in five women will be a victim of rape or attempted rape     their own best interests," said Amnesty International.
in her lifetime. Traditional practices such as genital
mutilation, early marriage, and the practice of newly        To fight the spread of HIV/AIDS governments must
bereaved widows being "inherited" by other male rela-        take effective measures to:
tives also increases women's exposure to the virus.               Increase awareness of HIV/AIDS and ensure ac-
                                                                  cess to anti-retroviral drugs and appropriate medi-
Mass rape and sexual violence in conflicts drives the             cal care
HIV pandemic, in countries as disparate as the DRC                Stop violence against women
and Colombia. In the DRC tens of thousands of                     Ensure education for women and girls, including
women were raped during the conflict and the health               information about health and sexuality
system has completely collapsed with only eight per-              Increase economic empowerment of women
cent of donated blood being tested before use in trans-           Undertake more effective public information cam-
fusions. The situation in the war torn region of Darfur in        paigns to fight the stigma about HIV/AIDS.
Sudan is likely to go the same way given the similari-
ties of rape and sexual violence again used as a             "If a government can't ensure access to adequate
weapon of war. The majority of women in Darfur have          health care the international community has a respon-
also undergone female genital mutilation, a factor in-       sibility to contribute material support, Amnesty Interna-
creasingly likely to put them at risk of infection.          tional added.
Stigma is still a serious problem - for both survivors of    Background
rape and people living with HIV/AIDS. Women often            The number of people living with HIV/AIDS in 2003
refrain from seeking medical treatment following rape        was estimated by UNAIDS to be 35.7 million adults (of
because of the risk that they will be identified as rape     whom 17 million were women) and 2.1 million children.
victims within their community and ostracized. In Co-        An increasing proportion of those infected with HIV/
lombia Amnesty International has received testimonies        Aids are women. Globally, young women are 1.6 times
about people from stigmatised groups, including those
                                                                                                   (Continued on page 11)

December 2004, Issue 4
                                                                                          The VAW Monitor p. 11

                           International and Regional News, continued
        Lithuania Ratifies EU Constitution                  (Continued from page 1)
                                                            law enforcement officials and teachers.
 Nearly two weeks after the European Constitu-
 tion was formally signed, Lithuania became                 In addition to working on grant writing and translat-
 the first country in the EU to ratify it. The              ing, Jessica is also participating in seminars on
 Lithuanian Parliament ratified the Constitution            domestic violence, using information about do-
 by an overwhelming majority on November 11.                mestic violence statistics and domestic violence
 Lithuania seemingly beat out the European                  law from Minnesota and the United States. For
 Parliament which expected to be the first                  presentations on women s issues in Kyrgyzstan
 parliament in Europe to ratify the Constitution            given to Peace Corps volunteers and to non-
 in December. Similarly, Italy was expecting to             English speakers (mainly university students), she
 be the first member state to ratify the Constitu-          compiled a manual about domestic violence and
 tion in its parliament. All twenty-five Member             trafficking, using resources from the Stop Violence
 States must ratify the Constitution (through a             Against Women website and other sources. The
 referendum or parliament) before it can come               manual provides a broad range of information on
 into force.                                                domestic violence, human trafficking, and legisla-
                                                            tion relating to these subjects in both Kyrgyzstan
 Compiled from: Lithuania first to ratify EU Constitu-
                                                            and the United States, as well as contact informa-
 tion,, 11 November 2004.
                                                            tion for NGOs in Kyrgyzstan that work on domestic
 For more information, please visit the International       violence and trafficking and programs to aid vic-
 Law: EU Constitution section of the STOPVAW                tims in the United States.
 website (
                                                            Jessica commented that the Stop Violence
                                                            Against Women website and other sources have
(Continued from page 10)                                    been indispensable in that pursuit of information
more likely to be living with HIV/AIDS than young men       [for the training manual]. I will continue to use it as
according to UNAIDS. In Sub-Saharan Africa 57% of           my work goes on
adults living with the virus are women, and two thirds of
young HIV-positive people are women and girls.
                                                            this footer remain intact. Only the list subscription
Women are increasingly campaigning effectively for          message may be removed.
their rights. Grassroots activism by women, including in
particular women living with HIV/AIDS, has acceler-         ********************************************************
ated in recent years.                                       Past and current Amnesty news services can be
                                                            found at Visit
Sign up to the Stop violence aginst women cam-     for information about Amnesty
paign at                         International and for other AI publications. Contact
maacT2zabb0sebdTh3Ob/                              if you need to get in touch
                                                            with the International Secretariat of Amnesty Interna-
Take action!                                                tional.

Colombia: Women's bodies used as a battleground             Privacy policy
-                                privacy-eng
                                                            For more information, please visit the Sexual Assault,
Timor-Leste: Five years on, Indonesia still denies          HIV/AIDS and Other STIs section of the STOPVAW
justice to victims of sexual violence - amnesty-            website (                     Sexual_Assault__HIV_AIDS_and_
You may repost this message onto other sources
provided the main text is not altered in any way and
both the header crediting Amnesty International and
                                                                                        December 2004, Issue 4
p.12 The VAW Monitor

                                                National News
                   Albania: NGOs Establish the Alliance Against Domestic Violence
                       Tirana 29 October 2004 - Ten         'This is one of the most important days for all of us. -
                       major Albanian NGO's agreed          said Altin Hazizaj, Director of CRCA in the launch of
                       to joined forces to work for the     the event - For CRCA becoming a member of the Alli-
                       preparation of a new draft-law       ance was an easy decision, for the only reason that
                       "Against Domestic Violence".         domestic violence, including the violence against chil-
                       The initiative was launched on       dren in the family, destroys the life of children and
                       October 29 before a selected         other members of the family. It is time for Albania to
                       group of representatives of          have a progressive law against domestic violence and
NGO's, Albanian Government, UN Agencies, OSCE               we are proud to be part of the group who will bring
etc, under the name "The Alliance for Promotion of          forward this changes.'
Legal Initiative Against Domestic Violence", which is
lead by Citizen's Advocacy Office.                          Other speakers of the event included the Chairwoman
                                                            of the Parliamentary Commission for Social Affairs,
The initiative was motivated by a failure to include pro-   Ms, Valentina Leskaj, the Director of Citizen's Advo-
visions against domestic violence in the January 2004       cacy Office Mr. Kreshnik Spahiu, and Director of
Family Code of Albania. The initiative seeks to bring       Women's Advocacy Center Ms. Vjollca Meçe. Printed
legislative change and improvement to domestic vio-         and broadcasted media gave a large coverage of the
lence in Albania, through an open process of public         event, especially national TV channels such as TV
participation and lobbying with the Albanian Parlia-        Klan, Top Channel and national printed media such as
ment.                                                       'Shekulli' etc.

The initiative is leaded by the Citizen's Advocacy Of-      For more information, please contact:
fice, which is known in Albania for its actions against     Mr. Altin Hazizaj Director
corruption. The other NGO's include the Children's          Children's Human Rights Centre of Albania - CRCA
Human Rights Centre of Albania (CRCA), Women's              Tel / Fax: + 355 4 242264;
Advocacy Centre, Counseling Centre for Women and            E-mail:;
Girls, Gender Alliance for Development, Women's
Organisation "Refleksione", Women's Shelter, Legal          Cited ifrom Newsletter 243, Information and Research Cen-
Clinic for Minors, Useful to Albanian Women, Center         tre for Children's Rights in Albania -IRCCRA, 1 November
for Family Planning.                                        2004.

                Human Rights Committee Considers First Periodic Report of Albania
The International Covenant on Civil and Political           Committee observed that Albania's role as a transit
Rights Human Rights Committee considered the                country for trafficking had decreased, it expressed
first report of Albania. In its concluding observa-         concern over both the involvement of authorities in
tions (, the            this phenomenon and the lack of victim and witness
Committee welcomed several positive measures                protection.
taken by Albania, such as the establishment of a
Committee for Equal Opportunity and new legisla-            The Committee recommended that the Albanian
tion in the Criminal Code, Criminal Procedure Code          government adopt and carry out policies to counter
and Family Code towards the protection of human             legislative gender discrimination domestic violence,
rights.                                                     increase domestic violence public awareness, and
                                                            provide victim assistance through crisis hotlines,
With regard to women, the Committee expressed               victim support centers in medical, legal and psycho-
concern over both the continuing gender discrimina-         logical facilities, and shelters. The Committee also
tion in laws and traditional codes (Kanun) and the          suggested Albania promote participation of women
prevalence of domestic violence. In addition, the           in the political, public and other areas of the State.
Committee was concerned over the low participa-             The Committee urged the Albanian government to
tion of women in the political and economic spheres         strengthen international cooperation to combat traf-
of public affairs, especially in higher-ranking posi-       ficking in persons and to provide protection to vic-
tions in public administration. Finally, while the          tims witnesses of trafficking.
December 2004, Issue 4
                                                                                       The VAW Monitor p. 13

                                                 National News
 Venice Commission Recommends Human                            DNA Technology Act Signed Into Law
         Rights Court for Kosovo
                                                           On 9 October 2004 the US Senate passed the
A press release from the Council of Europe Venice           Justice for All Act of 2004 , an anti-crime bill that
Commission: Strasbourg, 15.10.2004                         includes the Advancing Justice Through DNA
                                                           Technology Act and crime victims rights legisla-
The Venice Commission of the Council of Europe             tion. The legislation will provide the much-needed
has proposed setting up a Human Rights Court in            money to test more than 300,000 rape kits and
Kosovo as part of a programme of measures de-              other crime scene evidence that comprise a na-
signed to improve human rights protection for its          tionwide backlog. This bill will enact the Debbie
citizens.                                                  Smith Backlog Grant Program, which provides
                                                           $755 million in order to test the backlog, and will
Since 1999 Kosovo has been administered by sev-            hopefully assist victims obtain the justice they
eral international organisations, including the United     have been waiting for. This Grant program is
Nations, the OSCE and NATO, all of which are im-           named for a rape survivor who waited six years
mune to legal claims of human rights abuses. In a          for the evidence in her rape kit to be tested.
new report the Venice Commission concludes that
Kosovo now needs independent mechanisms for                The legislation also provides funding for victims
reviewing human rights, although it acknowledges           services and assistance to families of murder vic-
that the interim administration is fully committed to      tims, among other things. The bill will be sent to
respecting human rights standards.                         the House of Representatives for final approval,
                                                           and will then await approval from the President.
As well as a Human Rights Court, the Venice Com-
mission suggests setting up independent advisory           Compiled from: Anti-Crime Legislation Passes Con-
                                                           gress, , The Justice Project: Campaign for Criminal
boards for UNMIK and KFOR, to complement the
                                                           Justice Reform, 9 October 2004.
protection already offered, in particular by the Kos-
ovo Ombudsperson. Where the Ombudsperson has               To learn more about Law and Policy regarding Sexual
found human rights breaches but has not per-               Assault, please go to
suaded UNMIK to assume accountability, cases               Law_and_Policy.html.
would be brought before the Panel. The latter's
opinion would be made public in three languages.
                                                            Forty New Cases of Alleged Sterilization in
Also, the Venice Commission proposes to establish                     the Czech Republic
a special Chamber of the Supreme Court with the
power to review individual human rights cases with         The office of the Czech ombudsman says it has
regard to the provisional institutions of self govern-     evidence of 40 new cases of alleged coercive
ment (PISG).                                               sterilization of Roma women - more than a third of
                                                           them performed before 1989. The office is now
Cited from: Venice Commission Recommends Human             gathering documentation which will be handed
Rights Court for Kosovo, Council of Europe, 15 October     over to the Health Ministry.
                                                           The first reports of alleged cases of coercive ster-
For more information, please visit the Kosovo section of   ilization appeared in September. The ombudsman
the STOPVAW website.
                                                           Otakar Motejl appointed an expert commission to
                                                           look into the matter. It is now to assess whether
Make a Donation/Support STOPVAW                            the cases of sterilization were in accordance with
To learn how you can support STOPVAW                       Czech law and medical ethics.
and its advocacy for women s rights around
                                                           Copyright (c) 2004 Radio Prague (Cesky Rozhlas 7 -
the world, go to and click                 Radio Praha) News NOVEMBER 10th, 2004 By: Pavla
on Make a Donation. With your help, we can                 Horakova.
continue to support women s advocates in
the effort to eliminate violence against                   For more information, please visit the Czech Republic
                                                           section of the STOPVAW website.
women. Thank you very much.
                                                                                      December 2004, Issue 4
p.14 The VAW Monitor

                                                National News
   OSCE Mission Helps Georgia Develop                       Human Rights Committee Considers Fifth
   National Action Plan to Combat Human                           Periodic Report of Poland
                                                          The United Nations has
Tbilisi, 11 November 2004 - The OSCE Mission to           issued a Press Release
Georgia is boosting the country's fight against hu-       concerning the review of
man trafficking by helping the government develop         Poland's fifth periodic re-
an Action Plan, which is set for completion at a con-     port under the International
ference starting today.                                   Covenant of Civil and Po-
                                                          litical Rights (ICCPR) by
Key ministry officials and heads of anti-trafficking      the Human Rights Com-
agencies will draft an updated version of the Action      mittee (HRC). Poland is
Plan at the two-day event, supported by the Mission       one of 153 States parties to the ICCPR. There-
and the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and       fore, the country is required to submit reports on
Human Rights.                                             its attempts to implement the provisions of the
"The international fight against human trafficking
remains an OSCE priority," said the Head of the           According to Sylweriusz Krolak, Under Secretary
OSCE Mission, Ambassador Roy Reeve. "We hope              of State in the Ministry of Justice of Poland, who
the Georgian government and civil society will come       introduced the document, the report focuses on
up with a robust strategy to tackle this complex is-      gender mainstreaming, eliminating the abuse of
sue effectively."                                         junior soldiers in the army, providing efficient
                                                          penitentiary supervision and independent moni-
The conference will pull together the results of five     toring of rights of persons deprived of liberty.
working groups on prevention of trafficking, prose-
cution of perpetrators ,illegal migration, victim pro-    The report also addresses concerns of the Com-
tection and rehabilitation and international co-          mittee such as the frequency of pre-trail deten-
operation. In preparation for the draft, the Mission      tion, access to legal assistance, the scope of ju-
supported the working groups through its imple-           risdiction of military courts, and wiretapping of
menting partner, the Georgian NGO, People's Har-          new religious movements.
monious Development Society.
                                                          More generally the report describes the Polish
"Trafficking in human beings is a complex human           Government's response to human rights and con-
rights issue, which affects virtually all OSCE States     ditions of detention, terrorism, gender equality,
either as countries of origin, transit or destination,"   trafficking in human beings, refugees and asylum
Ambassador Reeve said. "By adopting and imple-            seekers, due process, and racial and other forms
menting a realistic plan against trafficking, Georgia     of discrimination.
will demonstrate its adherence to its international
commitments in the field of human rights and de-          Compiled from: "Human Rights Committee Considers
mocratization."                                           Report of Poland," Press Release, United Nations, 28
                                                          October 2004.
For further information, please contact:
                                                          For more information, please visit the Poland: Report-
Martha Freeman
                                                          ing Schedule section of the STOPVAW website
Spokesperson Press and Public Information Office          (www.stopvaw.orgInternational_Covenant_on_Civil_an
OSCE Mission to Georgia                                   d_Political_Rights20.html).
Krtsanisi Governmental Residence No. 5
Tbilisi Georgia
Tel.: +995 32 24 42 01; Fax: +995 32 24 42 03
                                                          Receive The VAW Monitor electronically. Go
Cited from: OSCE Mission helps Georgia develop Na-        to
tional Action Plan to combat human trafficking, Press     to subscribe to the VAW Monitor or to obtain
Release, 11 November 2004.                                an archived copy.

December 2004, Issue 4
                                                                                               The VAW Monitor p. 15

                                                 National News
                               Human Trafficking          Fighting an Invisible Crime
Human trafficking is increasingly taking center stage           With rising standards of living and entry into the
as one of the world's most important, yet most invisi-         European Union, the Czech Republic is increasingly
ble crimes. After the fall of communism in 1989 and            becoming a destination for trafficked people. Victims
the disintegration of the Soviet Union and Yugosla-            usually originate in less stable and less prosperous
via two years later, political and economic instability        regions further east. Petra Burcikova has the details:
in some parts of Central and Eastern Europe pro-
vided fertile ground for criminal exploitation of hu-          "Most of the victims that end up trafficked in the
man beings. Sex trafficking became an ever-                    Czech Republic come from the former Soviet Union,
growing tragedy, but other forms of exploitation,              mostly Moldova, Ukraine, Belarus, some of them
such as forced labor, have also come to the fore.              from Russia, quite many from Bulgaria, quite a few
Maida Agovic reports about efforts to counter these            from Slovakia as well, and in the past two years, we
problems in the Czech Republic and beyond.                     have, for the first time, had clients from Asia, from
                                                               China and Vietnam. Recently we also had a few
 More than four million people worldwide are victims           clients from Central Asia."
of human trafficking every year, according to esti-
mates of the Organization for Security and Coop-               The work of La Strada International has not gone
eration in Europe. The Czech Republic has not                  unnoticed. Last week at the MTV Europe Music
been spared. But official statistics about the num-            Awards in Rome, La Strada was awarded the "Free
bers of trafficked victims are practically non-existent,       Your Mind Award" for its decade-long activity in the
as this is an underreported and almost invisible               prevention of human trafficking. Previous winners of
crime.                                                         this prestigious award include organizations such as
                                                               Amnesty International and Greenpeace.
"La Strada International", a Dutch non-
governmental organization that has been active in              For more information about the work and achieve-
Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe for the               ments of La Strada International, you can log on to
past ten years, works to combat this invisibility, raise       their webpage
awareness about this issue, and help the victims
                       return to their normal lives.           Cited from: Maida Agovic, Human Trafficking - Fighting an
                       The best way to achieve this            Invisible Crime, Radio Praha, 26 November 2004.
                       goal is to improve the legal
                       system in individual countries          For more information, please visit the Czech Republic
                                                               section of the STOPVAW website.
                       and laws governing human
                       trafficking. Petra Burcikova,
                       the director and national co-            Tajik Court Applies Human Trafficking Law
                       ordinator of La Strada in the                         for the First Time
                       Czech Republic, mentions
                       the achievements of the local           A Tajik court sentenced 34-year-old Jahon Hilolova
branch of this organization:                                   to 14 years' imprisonment on 4 November for the
                                                               sexual exploitation of her underage adopted daugh-
"The development that I am very proud of is the                ter, Avesta reported. Hilolova brought her daughter
amendment to the criminal code, which came into                to Dubai, Iran, and Turkey, where she forced her to
force in October 2004. Most of La Strada's advo-               engage in prostitution, RFE/RL's Tajik Service re-
cacy work in previous years focused on addressing              ported. Judge Muhabbat Shamsiddinov noted that
the fact that the previous definition of human traffick-       the sentence marks the first time a Tajik court has
ing in the criminal code did not include, for example,         applied a new law against human trafficking. DK
trafficking for forced labor, only sex trafficking. It also
didn't include internal trafficking, and I'm happy to          Copyright (c) 2004. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the per-
say that the new amendment of the criminal code                mission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Con-
                                                               necticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.
includes different forms of human trafficking, and
also sanctions trafficking within the national bor-            For more information, please visit the Tajikistan section of
ders."                                                         the STOPVAW website.

                                                                                             December 2004, Issue 4
p.16 The VAW Monitor

                                             National News
                      Companies Awarded for Best Equal Opportunities Policy
                          Despite gradual changes        their journalistic qualities."
                          in legislation, women on
                          the Czech labour market        The pilot year of the contest was meant to help
                          still face a lot of chal-      fine-tune the criteria for the following years but its
                          lenges, especially if they     main goal was to establish the issue of equal op-
                          have or want to start a        portunities in Czech society. Linda Sokacova from
                          family. Difficulties in bal-   the Gender Studies centre, the co-organiser of
                          ancing their personal and      the competition.
                          working life make many
                          women give up their ca-        "Equal opportunities are quite a new issue in the
reers and cause employers to lose a lot of tal-          Czech Republic. So the first step is to raise
ented staff. Those companies in the Czech Re-            awareness among the public and also among
public that have decided to tackle this issue had a      employers because they are a very important
chance to show off their achievements this week          subject in promoting equal opportunities in soci-
in the country's first ever contest for the company      ety. And we hope that this contest for the best
with the best equal opportunities policy.                Czech firm in the approach to equal opportunities
                                                         will promote this topic among the public and will
Three companies were awarded in the pilot year           raise the importance of equal opportunities in the
of the Best Equal Opportunities Policy contest,          Czech Republic."
organised by the Gender Studies centre and the
Trade and Industry Ministry. Two were interna-           Cited from: Pavla Horakova, First Companies Awarded
tional companies, Air Products and IBM Czech             for Best Equal Opportunities Policy, Radio Praha, 24
Republic. The winner in the small firms category         November 2004.
was the company R-Presse which publishes the
investigative weekly Respekt. The paper's editor-
in-chief Tomas Nemecek said he was surprised
by the award as he said the company followed no           179 Victims of Human Trafficking Rescued
special policy, just instincts.                                          in Uzbekistan
"We hope that we were appreciated because of              The coordinator of the International Organization
our attempt to help our employees who are par-            for Migration s counter trafficking project in Uzbeki-
ents, no matter if they are men or women. So we           stan, Nodira Karimova, has reported that 179 vic-
try to help them with flexible working hours and          tims of human trafficking have been rescued in the
we try to find special jobs for them, for example         first year of the project. The project successfully
monitoring of daily press."                               helped many victims return to their homes from
                                                          abroad. Reportedly, many Uzbeks are currently
Tomas Nemecek says he thinks that in his com-             victims of human trafficking and are being em-
pany there is no such thing as the proverbial             ployed as virtual slaves in Russia. Many victims
glass ceiling that prevents women from reaching           report that the majority of individuals associated
senior positions - although at its start Respekt          with the gangs who victimize so many Uzbeks
was considered a predominantly male voice.                desperate for work, are themselves Uzbeks.

"Maybe it's still perceived as a male voice, I'm not      Copyright (c) 2004. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the
                                                          permission of Radio Free Europe.Radio Liberty, 1201
sure but I hope it has changed since the mid-
                                                          Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.
1990s when my predecessors tried to find women  
employees, to find a female voice for this maga-
zine. This effort was relatively successful, we           For more information, please visit the Trafficking in Per-
found some excellent reporters, like Hana Ca-             sons: Protection, Support and Assistance of Vic-
pova and Eliska Bartova, who are now full mem-            tims section of the STOPVAW website
bers of staff. It's not affirmative action, they are      (
not here because they are women but because of            Protection__Support_and_Assistance_of_

December 2004, Issue 4
                                                                                          The VAW Monitor p. 17

                                    New Research and Reports
              Two New Publications on Trafficking in Ukraine by Winrock International
Winrock International has                                  ness and developing collaborative partnerships be-
been engaged in the fight                                  tween organizations and governmental agencies.
against human trafficking
for over six years and has
                                                           Helping Survivors of Human Trafficking Law en-
received acclaim for its
                                                           forcement officials, social workers, health care provid-
methodologies for reduc-
                                                           ers and organizations requested information to better
ing trafficking through
                                                           serve the needs of victims of trafficking. This survivor-
innovative means. Winrock s anti-trafficking programs
                                                           focused guide offers effective strategies for addressing
operate on the belief that trafficking can be combated
                                                           problems survivors face, strategies for survivor support
by empowering one individual at a time while simulta-
                                                           and ethical issues.
neously working to affect change in government and
community responses.
                                                           These publications can be downloaded for free from
                                                           these project websites:
Through its Human Trafficking Prevention Program,
                                                           Publications/LL_Eng.pdf and
Winrock is releasing two new publications from its
                                                           DOS/publications/Blok_Eng.pdf. A limited number of
Trafficking Prevention Program in Ukraine. These pub-
                                                           hard copies of these publications are also available.
lications are the result of our pioneering experience
implementing human trafficking prevention projects in
                                                           For more information on Winrock International s Hu-
the former Soviet Union.
                                                           man Trafficking Prevention Program and these publi-
                                                           cations, please contact Amy Heyden
Winning Strategies: Trafficking Prevention Project in
                                                           ( or Sarah Tweed
Ukraine Best practices and innovative approaches
                                                           ( Or contact our office in Virginia
are highlighted in this report that addresses the two
                                                           at 703.525.9430.
factors that contribute to growth in human trafficking
lack of economic opportunity and violence against
                                                           Winrock International works in the United States and more
women. It offers strategies for empowering women,          than 65 countries to increase economic opportunity, sustain
strengthening the capacity of nongovernmental organi-      natural resources and protect the environment. Learn more
zations to serve those at risk, increasing public aware-   at

            New Report from Amnesty International on Violence Against Women in the
                               Middle East and North Africa
In the 25 years since the Convention on the Elimi-         reservations upon ratification, however, the reser-
nation of All Forms of Discrimination against              vations are not permitted to be contrary to the pur-
Women (CEDAW) was instituted, the world has                pose and goal of the treaty according to Article 28
seen many advances in women s rights. CEDAW                (2) of CEDAW. Most of the reservations and decla-
and its Optional Protocol have been ratified or ac-        rations are closely related to the main objective of
ceded to by 178 countries (including 14 countries in       the Convention the elimination of, and protection
North Africa and the Middle East). However, sev-           from, violence and discrimination against women.
eral countries have issued declarations or reserva-        Amnesty International fears that if these reserva-
tions that serve to exclude and weaken the domes-          tions and declarations remain unchanged, women
tic applicability of CEDAW.                                will not be guaranteed protection from violence and
                                                           discrimination, and the reservations will undermine
In its report titled, Weakening the protection of          [women s] ability to access justice or obtain redress
women from violence in the Middle East and North           through national mechanisms.
Africa region, Amnesty International urges the
governments who have issued such declarations to           Compiled from: Reservations to the Convention on the
align their domestic laws with international stan-         Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against
dards and CEDAW in order to ensure women s                 Women Weakening the protection of women from vio-
                                                           lence in the Middle East and North Africa region. Am-
rights to protection from violence and discrimina-         nesty International, 3 November 2004.
tion. International law allows countries to declare

                                                                                         December 2004, Issue 4
p.18 The VAW Monitor

                                   New Research and Reports
National Protocol on Sexual Assault Medical             ABA Focus on HIV/AIDS and Human Rights
         Forensic Exams Available
                                                        The American Bar Association (ABA) Section of
The U.S. Department of Justice Office on Vio-           Individual Rights and Responsibilities recently
lence against Women has released a National             released its fall issue of Human Rights magazine.
Protocol for Sexual Assault Medical Forensic Ex-        Entitled Human Rights and HIV/AIDS: Tied To-
aminations for Adults/Adolescents. The protocol         gether," this issue analyzes domestic and interna-
contains detailed guidelines for criminal justice       tional human rights issues surrounding the AIDS
and health care practitioners in responding to the      pandemic.
needs of victims of sexual assault. The protocol
recognizes the need to conduct examinations in a        The issue also includes a brief history on the
sensitive, dignified and victim-centered manner.        ABAs work on HIV/AIDS legal issues and pro-
Also, in recognition that coordinated community         motes the ABAs official policy urging the U.S.
efforts are the most effective way to stop violence     Government to use international human rights law
against women, the protocol has been designed           and science-based treatment in connection with
as a guide that combines cutting edge response          developing legislation, policies, programs, and
techniques with collaboration among service pro-        international agreements relating to HIV/AIDS
viders in order to enhance communities ability to       pandemic. Articles within the issue address the
treat victims and punish sexual offenders.              challenges regarding HIV/AIDS faced by minority
                                                        communities, the workplace and in a number of
Topics included in the protocol include: Coordi-        countries such as Russia, India, China, Africa.
nated Team Approach, Victim-Centered Care,
Informed Consent, Confidentiality, Reporting to         The issue is available online at:
Law Enforcement, Payment for Examination un-            irr/hr/fall04/home.html.
der VAWA, as well Operational Issues and the
Examination process. However, the protocol              Compiled from: ABA Human Rights Listserv, ABA-SIL
                                                        Human Rights Committee e-brief, 15 November 2004.
lacks any mention of emergency contraception,
which disturbed many victim's advocates as well         For more information, please visit the Sexual Assault:
as many doctors. A discussion of emergency              Sexual Assault, HIV/AIDS and Other STIs section of
contraception between the health care provider          the STOPVAW website (
and victim is standard medical protocol, and            Sexual_Assault__HIV_AIDS_and_Other_STIs.html).
some states require that the victim be offered it.
Critics also point out that only one page of the
entire 141 page protocol is devoted to                    UNECE Documents on 10 Year Review of
"pregnancy risk evaluation and care."                     Beijing Platform for Action Now Available
Compiled from: A National Protocol for Sexual Assault   Several documents relating to the U.N. Economic
Medical Forensic Examinations Adults/Adolescents,       Commission for Europe (UNECE) Regional Pre-
U.S. Department of Justice Office on Violence Against   paratory Meeting for the 10-Year Review of the
Women, September 2004.
                                                        Implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action
"Egypt Changes Courts; Rape Exam Guide Omits            (Geneva, 14-15 December 2004), are now avail-
E.C.", Robin Hindery, Women's ENews, 30 October         able. To view these documents, please visit

Please visit the section on Sexual Assault: Research    For more information, please visit the International
and Reports section available on the STOPVAW web-       Law: Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action sec-
site (                   tion of the STOPVAW website (

          Give us Feedback:
          Tell us how you are using the STOPVAW website and what resources or topics you believe
          should be discussed on the website. Go to www.stopvaw.org_Feedback.html to fill out the
          form. All contact information will remain confidential. Thank you for your interest!

December 2004, Issue 4
                                                                                      The VAW Monitor p. 19

      New Research and Reports                                        News, continued
   New Website from European Centre for               (Continued from page 9)
             Minority Issues                              enhance the inclusion of National Institutions
                                                          for the Protection of Human Rights and non-
The European Centre for Minority Issues (ECMI)            governmental organizations, in the work of the
has launched a new web site:                              Council of Europe.
The purpose of the                                    You may repost this message onto other sources
web site is to further                                provided the main text is not altered in any way
ECMI s mission of                                     and both the header crediting Amnesty Interna-
advancing majority-                                   tional and this footer remain intact. Only the list
minority relations in                                 subscription message may be removed.
Europe through ac-                                    ********************************************************
tion, research and                                    Past and current Amnesty news services can be
documentation. "ECMI supports the stabilization       found at Visit
of areas of ethno-political tension and conflict, for information about Amnesty
contributes to the strengthening of relevant legis-   International and for other AI publications. Contact
lation and best practices in minority governance, if you need to get in
and enhances the capacity of civil society actors     touch with the International Secretariat of Amnesty
and governments to engage with one another in a       International. Privacy policy
constructive and sustainable way. The website         pages/aboutai-privacy-eng
can be viewed in English, Macedonian, or Alba-
nian, and it contains three major sections: NGO       (Continued from page 7)
Network, Policy Dialogue Initiative and the Roma      empower them economically and politically. Women
Integration Project.                                  from war-torn societies around the world are now
                                                      waiting for us to fully address the recommendations
For more information, please see the Research         contained in Security Council resolution 1325 in
Gateways section of the STOPVAW website               ways that make a real difference in their everyday
(             lives. We cannot allow another decade to pass be-
                                                      fore this happens."

       New Website on EU Constitution                 To read the full text of the speech, visit:
An informational website has been launched
which focuses on the new European Constitu-           For more information on gender justice and on
tion. The site offers multilingual data regarding     UNIFEM's work in conflict-affected areas, visit
the text of the Constitution as well as resources
which explain it. The website can be found at eu-
                                                      (Continued from page 5)
Compiled from: "New Website on the Constitution."     posers attitude to objections submitted by NGOs.
The Network of East-West Women-Polska/NEWW,           An answer has not yet been received to our re-, 29 October 2004.                        quest for a meeting to negotiate the objections
                                                      with the Minister or the Secretary of State. We are
For more information, please visit the European Un-   aware that the drafters are not obliged to accept
ion section of the STOPVAW website                    our request. However, we consider the lack of an
                                                      answer an attempt to reduce the importance of
                                                      the issue of violence against women and an ex-
                                                      pression of disrespect towards NGOs that work
                                                      on issues of women s human rights.

                                                      To view the full report, please go to
                                             on the
                                                      STOPVAW website.
                                                                                     December 2004, Issue 4
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