Violence against women and girls is one of the most widespread violations of human rights; it cuts across boundaries of age, race, culture, wealth and geography.
The term ‘violence against women’ means “any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life” (United Nation, General Assembly Resolution 48/104 Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women, 1993).
Gender based violence is more than an act of abuse within the criminal law; it refers to violence directed against a person because of her gender, caused and supported by social and cultural practices and gender inequality. GBV, in fact, finds its roots in cultural beliefs, norms and attitudes, that justifies or tolerates male sexual aggression against women.
The term Gender-based violence highlights the gender dimension of these types of abuse, the relationship between females’ subordinate status in society and their increased vulnerability to violence.