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EU imposes sanctions for sexual violence

icon image | violence against women

On International Women’s Day, the EU is taking a stand against sexual violence: it is punishing the most atrocious acts by Russian officers, Taliban ministers and institutions in Myanmar and Syria.

The European Union has imposed sanctions for violence against women and girls for the first time. The punitive measures are aimed, among other things, at ministers of the radical Islamic Taliban in Afghanistan and at high-ranking Russian military and police officers. In future, those affected will no longer be allowed to enter the EU and any assets they may have in the EU must be frozen.

Afghanistan |  Minister of Higher Education, Mullah Neda Mohammad

EU sanctions also against Afghan minister Mullah Neda Mohammad of the radical Islamic Taliban

For example, the Taliban Minister for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice, Sheikh Muhammad Khalid Hanafi, is accused of restricting the freedom of speech and expression of women and girls and of discriminatory decrees on the wearing of the headscarf. Sanctions were also imposed on the Minister of Higher Education, Mullah Neda Mohammad.

Torture of critics of the Ukraine war

Russian police officers are said to be responsible for the arbitrary detention and torture of women demonstrating against the war in Ukraine. The justification for the sanction cites reports from victims that they were “beaten, almost suffocated with plastic bags and physically and verbally abused for hours”.

Members of the Russian armed forces have been accused of being responsible for systematic sexual and gender-based violence in Ukraine. The EU is also basing this on charges brought by the Ukrainian authorities. They include the rape of a pregnant woman near Kiev, the murder of a civilian after his wife repeatedly raped him in the presence of a small child, and the involvement of members of a division in gang rapes.

“We follow words with deeds”

On International Women’s Day, the EU is showing that in the fight against violence against women, words are followed by deeds, commented EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell on Tuesday’s decision by the EU states. It is about holding those responsible to account and fighting impunity.

In addition to the nine people, the Syrian Republican Guard, the Qarchak women’s prison in Iran and the post of chief of military security in Myanmar were also sanctioned. “The Syrian Republican Guard is part of a systematic approach by the Syrian regime to use sexual and gender-based violence to oppress and intimidate the Syrian population, especially women and girls,” the sanctions decision said.

Myanmar |  protest women

Women in Myanmar have been tortured in the most horrific ways by military intelligence

According to the Office of the Chief of the Military Security Agency in Myanmar (OCMSA), OCMSA personnel used “forced nudity, rape, electric shocks, genital burning and excessive force during the arbitrary detention and interrogation of men, women and members of the LGBTIQ community “. The latter are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer and intersex people.

Guterres laments “massive steps backwards”

UN Secretary-General António Guterres had previously lamented “massive steps backwards” in the rights of women and girls. Real equality is “still 300 years away,” he told the UN General Assembly in New York.

New York |  UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres

UN Secretary-General António Guterres opens the 67th UN Conference on the State of Women in the World

Guterres warned that equality between women and men was becoming “more and more distant”. “The progress made over decades is disappearing before our eyes,” he said in his speech on Monday (local time) at the opening of a two-week session of the UN Commission on Women’s Rights to mark International Women’s Day on March 8th.

The UN Secretary-General named child marriages or the lack of access to education for girls as examples. The situation in Afghanistan is particularly bad, where the radical Islamic Taliban have “banned women and girls from public life.”

Guterres, on the other hand, relies primarily on education to overcome patriarchal structures. He called on the global community to enable gender-equitable education and to invest in “bridging the digital gender gap”.



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    July 13, 2023 at 4:03 am

    This was beautiful Admin. Thank you for your reflections.

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