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The Pacific region has some of the highest rates of violence against women recorded in the world – twice the global average with an estimated two in every three Pacific women impacted by gender-based violence.
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These documents highlight key accomplishments supported by the Pacific Partnership in Fiji, Kiribati, Solomon Islands, and Tonga.
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This brief provides an overview of the Rights of Nature, how the global movement is being translated into regional action, and its connection with indigenous knowledge and systems of living in harmony with nature. 
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This issue of the WA2J Quarterly Brief highlights the project initiatives from April - November 2021 under the joint UN Women, ICJ, and OHCHR project titled "Enhancing Women’s Access to Justice in the Asia Pacific: Bridging the gap between formal and informal systems through women’s empowerment." The aim of the joint project is to make justice accessible for women by strengthening the formal justice system and creating an enabling environment for justice seekers by working with civil society organizations, women human rights defenders, and community-based justice mechanisms as well as initiating regional, national and community dialogues. The project is generously supported by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency SIDA.
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Awareness raising activities are widely used and have an important role to play in tackling violence against women and girls (VAWG). However, there is little evidence that awareness raising activities on their own are able to significantly reduce VAWG. Numerous programmes designed to prevent VAWG have raised awareness and shifted attitudes about abuse, but far fewer have successfully reduced violent behaviour, and there is often a mismatch between the intended aims of awareness raising.
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The general seat MPs act as the electorate, but there is effectively no competition for the seats as party leaders nominate only as many candidates as there are available seats for each party. The reserved seat MPs, therefore, do not have a constituency as they are not directly elected by the people, and they are not considered by the voters as a representative of the women’s electorate. The female MPs of the reserved seats neither have a budget allocation to develop their own initiatives nor have little influence in governmental policy decisions. They have traditionally been treated as second-tier parliamentarians and been used as a ‘vote bank’ for the treasury benches. The current system of reserved seats without direct election has caused marginalization of women in the policy-making institution and has not benefitted women.
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In Pakistan, Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) is widespread, normalized and legitimized because of pervasive gender inequality and deep-rooted patriarchy. Pakistan ranks at 151 out of 153 countries according to the World Economic Forum’s Gender Gap report 2018 and 164 out of 167 in the Women, Peace and Security Index 2019. Violence Against Women (VAW) is significant in Pakistan and pervades every class, ethnicity, religion, geographical location and age group.
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The “UN Women impact stories series”, updated quarterly, illustrates the human impact of UN Women’s work across Asia and the Pacific, highlighting the partnerships that make this work possible. These stories share how we and our many partners are striding forward to realize a better world for women and girls—one of equality and empowerment because that is what we do and who we are, as a leader, mobilizer, convenor, and provider of programmes.
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[Infographics] Women who migrate for work contribute greatly to stronger societies and economies in both their countries of origin and their countries of destination. For many, the decision to work abroad involves prioritizing their families’ welfare over their own personal comfort and desires. Women generally have fewer options than men for regular migration, and are often employed in lower paid, informal sectors with few, if any, labour protections.
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The policy brief was developed based on the results of the Survey on the Socio-Economic Situation of 53 Ethnic Minority Group in Viet Nam in 2019 and other recent research results related to ethnic minority issues in Viet Nam. The policy brief aims to support the process of formulating and implementing policy for ethnic minority areas, contributing to an effective and comprehensive promotion of gender equality in ethnic minority areas as Viet Nam.
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The Safe and Fair Project, in particular, focuses on addressing the needs of women especially women migrant workers and women in informal employment in this policy document while advocacy interventions of the G20 project target other marginalized groups such as people with disabilities and ethnic minority groups. The interventions on gender equality, gender and labour migration are in line with Viet Nam’s commitments on these issues through ratification of International Labour Standards, UN CEDAW and at ASEAN level (ASEAN Consensus, ASEAN Declaration on Ending violence against women among others).
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As Nepal grapples with a second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, the lives of people in Nepal have been drastically impacted. The most severe consequences are being borne by women, as well as vulnerable and excluded groups. To respond to the ongoing humanitarian crisis, UN Women Nepal Country Office (NCO) has developed a comprehensive relief package to support women from excluded groups in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.
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The policy brief, Nepal’s Gender-Based Violence and Gender Equality Funds: The Path to Effective Implementation, provides targeted recommendations to the Government of Nepal (GoN), civil society, and other key actors for the effective implementation of Nepal’s gender-based violence (GBV) and gender equality (GE) funds in a federal context.
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The programme Enhancing Access to Justice for Women in Asia and the Pacific: Bridging the gap between formal and informal systems through women’s empowerment aims to make justice accessible for women by strengthen the formal justice system and to create an enabling environment for justice seekers by working with CSOs, women human rights defenders, and community-based justice mechanisms.
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This brief provides guidance on the provision of remote services to women migrant workers who are at risk of, or subjected to violence. The brief is based on international principles and standards of service provision for women survivors of violence , together with emerging practice and knowledge on how these can be delivered remotely. The brief complements the 16 Essentials for Quality Multisectoral Service Provision to Women Migrant Workers Subject to Violence .
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Case studies in this report provide entry points and lessons learned on how to adapt programming and integrate women and girls in the COVID-19 response and recovery efforts.
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On 29 November 2020- International Women Human Rights Defender’s Day, survivors of gender-based violence shared their experiences at the grounds of Tarango. It is the shelter home and safe space for women and girls located in Mirpur of Dhaka. The event allowed scope for dialogue with the community on the many issues faced by women and girls incessantly.
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The Pacific region has some of the highest rates of violence against women recorded in the world – twice the global average with an estimated two in every three Pacific women impacted by gender-based violence.
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[Commemorating 20 years of UN Security Council Resolution 1325] - On 25 August 2017, the military offensive in Rakhine state, Myanmar, targeting the Rohingya escalated and the violence unleashed upon them forced them to flee across the border to Bangladesh. To date 861,545 Rohingya refugees live in camps in Cox’s Bazar, over half of which are women and girls and an estimated 80% of whom are women and children.
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The 20th anniversary of the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda is a critical moment for the agenda and its relevance, which has been tested by the extensive impacts of COVID-19. This publication takes stock of the progress as well as the gaps in implementing WPS in the Asia Pacific region over the last 20 years, and builds upon the lessons learned to move the WPS agenda forward in the years to come.