Let’s challenge militarism and end violence against women

At least one in every three women around the world will be beaten, raped or abused during her lifetime.

It’s these women’s stories which are behind the annual 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence, an international campaign that starts on 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, and ends on 10 December, Human Rights Day.

Now in its 23rd year, the campaign is led by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership (CWGL) at Rutgers University in the US. It seeks to emphasise gender-based violence as a human rights issue, while calling for governments to be more active in the protection of their citizens.


The theme for 2013 is: ‘Let’s challenge militarism and end violence against women’, to highlight the many intersections of these issues. It is estimated that around 90 per cent of current war casualties are civilians, the majority of whom are women and children, compared to 100 years ago when 90 per cent of those who died were military personnel.

‘Gender-based violence and militarism are deeply interconnected with economic and social rights. It is not enough to simply say we must end gender-based violence; economic access and social equality are structurally part of the full realisation of the human rights of all individuals,’ explained Dr. Radhika Balakrishnan, Executive Director of CWGL in a press release.

Various teams at the Institute of Development Studies have come together to promote key initiatives and actors working in this disturbing yet essential development area. The Storify below will be updated each day of the campaign with related blog posts, interviews and resources on the BRIDGE, Eldis and IDS websites.

As well as the events going on around the world, CWGL are encouraging supporters to get involved. You can get involved by:
• Using the hashtag #16Days on social media
• Responding to @16DaysCampaign ‘Question of the Day’ tweet
• Follow the next 16 days of activism and comment on BRIDGE’s Storify.