16 Days of activism

“Everyone has a responsibility to prevent and end violence against women and girls, starting by challenging the culture of discrimination that allows it to continue.”

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon


By resolution 54/134 of 17 December 1999, the United Nations General Assembly designated 25 November as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and invited governments, international organizations and NGOs to organize activities designed to raise public awareness of the problem on that day.

Women's activists have marked 25 November as a day against violence since 1981. This date came from the brutal assassination in 1960, of the three Mirabal sisters, political activists in the Dominican Republic, on orders of Dominican ruler Rafael Trujillo (1930-1961).

On 20 December 1993 the General Assembly, by resolution 48/104, adopted the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women.

Why it is important

·         Violence against women is a human rights violation

·         Violence against women is a consequence of discrimination against women, in law and also in practice, and of persisting inequalities between men and women

·         Violence against women impacts on, and impedes, progress in many areas, including poverty eradication, combating HIV/AIDS, and peace and security

·         Violence against women and girls is not inevitable. Prevention is possible and essential

·         Violence against women continues to be a global pandemic.

How UN observes this day

From 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, to 10 December, Human Rights Day, the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence Campaign is conducted to galvanize action to end violence against women and girls around the world.

In 2014, the United Nations Secretary-General’s Campaign UNiTE to End Violence against Women encouraged people to take the UNiTE campaign to local streets, shops and businesses, and organize “Orange Events” in their neighbourhoods between 25 November and 10 December 2014 to raise awareness about violence against women and discuss solutions that would work for their respective communities. 

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SG Message on 16 DOA

16 DOA in Uzbekistan