24 Nov 2008

Pacific leader tells men to take action to end violence against women

11:20 am on 24 November 2008

The Kiribati President Anote Tong says men must take the lead in stopping violence against women.

He says people, and especially men, need to be encouraged, to respect and honour the important role that women continue to play in fostering development in families and the nation.

President Tong will take a public stand against violence against women when he presents the preliminary findings of a study on gender-based violence and child abuse in Tarawa next month.

The event is part of the programme of activities in Kiribati to mark the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence, which begins on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, also known as White Ribbon Day, on the 25th of November.

The Kiribati survey is part of a multi-country study that has involved three Pacific countries.

The other countries are Solomon Islands, where a study has been carried out simultaneously with the Kiribati one, and Samoa, where a study was undertaken between 1999 and 2001.

The studies will provide reliable information on the extent of violence against women.

Preliminary findings of the current studies indicate that rates of violence against women in Kiribati and Solomon Islands are among the highest in the world.