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UN News Centre

Despite an increase in the number of women Speakers of Parliament, the number of female parliamentarians across the world rose by only 0.5 percentage points in 2015, the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) today reported, dashing hopes that gender parity in parliament could be achieved within a generation.

UNFPA

"I was unaware of the fact that young people have the right to decide freely on matters related to their sexuality and that sexual and reproductive rights are basic human rights," said Barun Kuinkel, age 17, after attending a sexual and reproductive health outreach session led by a peer educator from Y-PEER Nepal.

UN

    As a boy growing up in post-war Korea, I remember asking about a tradition I observed: women going into labour would leave their shoes at the threshold and then look back in fear. "They are wondering if they will ever step into those shoes again," my mother explained.

    UN Women

      This year's celebration of International Women's Day is the first within the new 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls are confidently asserted in that Agenda as intrinsic to progress.

      UN Women

      On 26 February, a Guatemalan court convicted two former military officers of crimes against humanity against 11 indigenous Q'eqchi' women who were subjected to sexual violence, sexual and domestic slavery, the forced disappearance of their husbands, as well as the murder and cruel treatment of a woman and her two small daughters.

      UNESCO

      Almost 16 million girls between the ages six and 11 will never get the chance to learn to read or write in primary school compared to about 8 million boys if current trends continue, according to a new report from the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS). In the run-up to International Women's Day on 8 March, the UNESCO eAtlas of Gender Inequality in Education shows that girls are still the first to be denied the right to education despite all the efforts and progress made over the past 20 years.

      ILO

      On the occasion of International Women's Day (8 March), the International Labour Organization (ILO) will publish a new report entitled " Women at Work: Trends 2016", and hold an interactive panel discussion on how to harness the newly adopted 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda to deliver on decent work for women.

      FAO

      In the framework of its support to Ebola recovery, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) donated a generator to the Koinadugu Women Vegetable Farmers’ Cooperative.

      UN News Centre

      The United Nations agency leading the world's HIV/AIDS response today called on the international community to celebrate individuality, as it observed Zero Discrimination Day, stressing that embracing diversity brings valuable benefits to all societies around the world. The theme of year's Day is 'Stand Out,' and encourages everyone to stand for fair and just societies.

      UNFPA

      On a bleak, cold day in late February, hundreds of refugees, bundled in winter coats and carrying bulging bags and baskets, stream into the Tebanovce transit centre, stationed on the border between the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Serbia.

      UN News Centre

      Women and girls need to be at the core of disaster risk reduction, given that they often bear the brunt of climate change and hazards such as storms and floods, United Nations experts tasked with monitoring implementation of a landmark UN convention on ending discrimination against women heard today.

      UN Women

      Thousands of women in Fiji rely on income gleaned from selling produce or handicrafts at local markets to pay for their children's education and day-to-day living expenses. Tropical Cyclone Winston's destruction of crops and market buildings not only takes away their source of income, it threatens the food security of entire communities, as well as having wider implications for their families' health, nutrition and education.

      UNHCR

      UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and UNICEF today launched a joint initiative to increase protection for the growing numbers of children and others with specific needs arriving in Europe. The agencies plan to scale up 20 Child and Family Protection Support Hubs, known as "Blue Dots," along the most frequently used migration routes in Europe.

      The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) is set to invest in securing women's rights to land and other productive resources, developing their capacity to boost food production and creating more wealth for family farmers, while preventing and minimizing food losses and waste.

      FAO

      Closing the digital gender gap: women farmers in South Africa receive ICT training under the “She Will Connect” programme.

      UNFPA

      BATOURI, Cameroon - Due to complications during the birth of her 11th child, Zandelé Colette, now 56, underwent an emergency caesarean section. However, the procedure occurred too late to save the child, who died shortly after birth, and, as a result of the prolonged labor, Zandelé developed obstetric fistula.

      UNFPA

      The Bondage of Culture, a nine-minute film on female genital mutilation (FGM) by Kenyan journalist Diana Kendi, was selected as the winner of the first annual Efua Dorkenoo Pan Africa Award for Reportage on FGM. 

      The World Bank

      In order to support countries in Latin America and the Caribbean affected by the Zika virus outbreak, the World Bank Group announced today that it has made US$150 million immediately available. This amount is based on current country demands for financing and follows extensive engagement with governments across the region, including sending teams of technical experts to affected countries.

      UNHCR

      Afghan refugee teacher Aqeela Asifi, who won the prestigious 2015 UNHCR Nansen Refugee Award for her extraordinary humanitarian work on behalf of refugees, has been included in the top 10 shortlist for the Varkey Foundation Global Teacher Prize 2016. She has been widely recognised for her brave and tireless dedication to education for Afghan refugee girls in Pakistan - while herself overcoming the struggles of life in exile. 

      UNFPA

      SHABWAH, Yemen - The nearly year-old conflict in Yemen has now embroiled 21 of the country's 22 governorates, civilian casualties are increasingly common, food is in short supply and many hospitals, police stations and other institutions essential for protecting and caring for the population, especially women and girls, have been forced to shut their doors.

      Zika
      WHO

      The World Health Organization has launched a global Strategic Response Framework and Joint Operations Plan to guide the international response to the spread of Zika virus infection and the neonatal malformations and neurological conditions associated with it. 

      UN Women

      The official opening of the Uganda Women's Situation Room was held on 15 February 2016 at the Sheraton Hotel in Kampala. The Women's Situation Room is an early warning and rapid response mechanism against violence arising before, during and after elections.

      UN Women

      Women leaders with disabilities from the Network of African Women with Disabilities (NAWWD) representing 10 African countries, and refugee women with disabilities met in Nairobi, Kenya from February 11-12 to participate in the workshop "Enhancing the Network's Humanitarian Advocacy at Regional and Global Events".

      UN News Centre

      The United Nations is working to ensure that the victims involved in four new allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse involving UN peacekeepers in the Central African Republic (CAR) have access to the help they need, a spokesperson for the world body said today.

      ReliefWeb

      The possibility that a mosquito bite during pregnancy could be linked to severe birth defects in newborns has alarmed the public and astonished scientists. Aedes aegypti, the principal mosquito species that transmits the Zika, dengue, and chikungunya viruses, has a number of breeding and behavioural quirks that make it extremely difficult to control. This article looks at conventional and new techniques for control and summarizes WHO guidance.

      UNFPA

      It was after midnight and Bibi Gul* was in critical condition when her husband and eldest daughter brought her to a hospital in Balkh, a province in northern Afghanistan. When the nurses examined her, they discovered that her body was covered in deep purple bruises, and that naswar, a powdered tobacco snuff, had been forced into her vagina.

      UN News Centre

      Since 2007, there have been nine rotations of all-female police units from India, whose primary responsibilities have been to provide 24-hour guard duty and public order management and to conduct night patrols in and around the capital, Monrovia, while assisting to build the capacity of local security institutions.

      UN News Centre

      An upsurge in global conflicts and brutal war tactics continues to make children extremely vulnerable to recruitment and use by armed groups, the United Nations warned today, appealing to the international community to take greater responsibility for the boys and girls used as child soldiers or risk failing to protect them.

      Child marriage
      UNFPA

      Standing several inches shy of her middle-aged groom’s shoulder, the 12-year-old bride, outfitted in a child-size white wedding gown and veil, stiffly clutches a small bouquet, as a photographer snaps the newlyweds' photo and the sun begins to set over a picturesque waterfront walkway in Beirut.

      UN News Centre

      More than ever today, the world needs science and science needs women, the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) said today marking the first International Day of Women and Girls in Science.

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