Italy reaffirms its firm commitment to the fight against all forms of discrimination and violence against women, which continues to be a serious and unacceptable obstacle to women’s rights and their full personal fulfillment. A priority commitment of our country’s foreign policy action, which the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is pursuing both on the diplomatic-negotiation level and on that of development cooperation. Testimony of this are the numerous international campaigns, such as those for the eradication of female genital mutilation (FGM) and early and forced marriages, which have always seen Italy at the forefront.
On the occasion of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, the Foreign Ministry and its foreign network adhere to the #OrangetheWorld awareness campaign, promoted by UN Women, which in 2019 is focused on the fight against rape, of which one woman every three in the world has been a victim in her life. The campaign will also be associated with the hashtag #GenerationEquality which, recalling the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Beijing Declaration on women, invites everyone to take important new steps towards gender equality: a goal that no country in the world today can affirm having achieved.
Italy’s commitment to eliminating gender-based violence
Italy is actively involved in promoting the rights of women, girls and children, in bilateral relations with other states, in international organizations and in development cooperation programs, for the full implementation of the SDG 5 sustainable development goal of the 2030 Agenda. Prevention and the fight against all forms of violence against women is also among the priorities of Italy’s current mandate in the Human Rights Council (CDU) of the United Nations (2019-2021).
In recent days, at the Nairobi Summit for the twenty-fifth anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), Italy has announced new commitments in areas that have always been priorities, such as the fight against seriously harmful practices such as female genital mutilation and early and forced marriages, which involve violations of the integrity of the physical and mental health of women and girls, as well as for the reduction of maternal mortality and for the emancipation of young women in matters of sexual and reproductive health. The national strategic plan on male violence against women 2017-2020, which implements the Istanbul Convention on violence against women and domestic violence, also includes important commitments to protect women and girls.
Italy also supports international initiatives for the prevention and combating of sexual and gender-based violence in conflict and emergency situations (including the Call to Action on Protection from Gender-Based Violence in Emergencies), as well as in cooperation with development and humanitarian aid (for example, this year’s OECD-DAC recommendation). Italy has long been committed to promoting a zero-tolerance policy against sexual abuse and exploitation committed by military and civilian personnel engaged in UN peacekeeping missions.