UNMISS marks 16 Days of Activism
6 December 2012 – In celebrating continued peace at the family, home, society and institutional levels in South Sudan, the UNMISS Gender Unit marked "16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence" in the mission's Juba headquarters today.
"Today marks an important opportunity for us as UNMISS and the wider UN family to reflect on our mandate as far as it relates to addressing gender-based violence and to reinforce our commitment in supporting the Republic of South Sudan in eradication of this problem," said UNMISS Senior Gender Adviser Amina Adam.
She said this year's activism activities aimed to sensitize all members of the community in ending all forms of violence and impunity directed at women and girls. "Gender based violence is a crime punishable by law. Stop it now," Ms. Adam said.
UNMISS Central Equatoria State Coordinator Hendrik Bruyn emphasized that gender violence was a violation against human rights.
Women in South Sudan faced various forms of violence, such as rape, domestic violence, early marriage, forced marriage, sexual violence, and denial of education to girls, Mr. Bruyn said.
"The situation is worsened by the absence or lack of rule of law," he said. "We as UNMISS, we support the full and active participation of all the women in South Sudan in the constitutional development process," Mr. Bruyn said.
Led by the South Sudanese Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare and Ministry of Social Development, a series of activism events have been held countrywide in collaboration with non-governmental organizations and partners over the past 10 days. Discussions on gender-based violence have also been aired on various local radio and television stations.
Observance of the 16 Days of Activism commenced in South Sudan on 25 November and will end on 10 December, International Human Rights Day.