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UN Human Rights Chief, Navi Pillay, to speak out on caste-based rape and violence at HRC-26 side event (17 June)

On 17 June, on the sidelines of the26th regular sessionof the UNHuman Rights Council, theUN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, will give the opening statement at a side event on caste-based violence against women. The event comes following a series of brutal rape cases against Dalit women, including therape and hanging of two teenage cousins in India.

Dalit women suffer rape and violence with impunity for the perpetrators and at an alarmingly high level. Urgent action to end this reality is imperative and Dalit women fighting against caste-based rape and violence on the ground are asking for a global level response.

The side event, entitled “Caste-based Violence against Women:The role of the UN in combatting caste-based violence and discrimination,” takes place onfrom 13:00-15:00 in room XXIIIat the Palais des Nations in Geneva. The event is sponsored byHuman Rights Watch, International Movement against all forms of Discrimination and Racism (IMADR),Minority Rights Group,Franciscan International, Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (Forum-Asia), and organized in association with International Dalit Solidarity Network (IDSN).

The event, to be moderated by Jyoti Sanghera, Chief of the Human Rights and Economic and Social Issues Section of the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), will address sexual and other forms of violence against Dalit women and explore with United Nations stakeholders how to take comprehensive and urgent action on this issue. Dalit women human rights defenders will speak of the reality on the ground in South Asia and a preview of a documentary on the Dalit women’s fight for justice in India will be screened at the opening of the event.

The full programme is availablehere.

Live tweeting from the event will be ontwitter.com/idsnupdatesand a live webcast may also be arranged.

For the flyer of the event, clickhere.

The official media advisory is availablehere.

Information on caste-based violence against women

For more information, quotes and cases including recent gang-rape cases and cases on the failure of systems of justice in connection with violence against Dalit women in South-Asia, download the leafletDalit women fight!.

The UN Non-Governmental Liaison Service (UN-NGLS) is an inter-agency programme of the United Nations mandated to develop constructive relations between the UN and civil society organizations.


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