Protests and celebrations take place worldwide ahead of International Women’s Day


By Katy Dartford with AP, AFP, EBU  •  Updated: 07/03/2021

Protests and celebrations take place worldwide ahead of International Women’s Day

French women’s rights activists gathered in Paris on Sunday to protest against sexism and sexual violence ahead of International Women’s Day on March 8.

Women’s groups have also called for a “feminist strike” on Monday to advocate for more equality and women’s rights in all parts of life.

Similar street protests are being organized across the country.

On the Republic Plaza, activists held a large banner reading “stop femicide”, to denounce the killing of women.

In France, 90 women were killed by their spouse last year according to the Justice Ministry, down from 146 in 1919.

French groups fighting violence against women said the decrease is likely to be linked to coronavirus restriction measures in the country.

Reports of domestic violence increased by 40% during the first lockdown in March-April and by 60% during the second in November-December, according to French authorities.

“We must continue to fight violence against women but also fight for more rights. It is important for our rights never to let go, even in France or in other countries like in Europe or South America because the rights of women are never acquired,” said one protester.

Elsewhere, Syrian Kurds marked International Women Day at a rally in Qamichli, in northeastern Syria controlled by semi-autonomous authorities.

“This gathering is to restore the self-confidence of women, and also for their education and development in order to face authoritarianism, the culture of death, exile and murder that exists in society, and to protect the gains of the revolution,” said Berevan, who celebrated the event in Qamichli.

In Russia, International Women’s Day is a public holiday, and in the city of Yekaterinburg, military officers celebrated with a street performance by a brass band and presented over 1,000 flowers to women.

Ahead of International Women’s Day, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have released a new report trying to address gender inequality, specifically for the hundreds of millions of women in the world’s developing countries.

“What we are calling for is for the government to implement temporary basic income for women. If you think about the rise of domestic violence, you will see how only women who have access to some basic income can escape from this situation,” Raquel Laguna the Director of Gender at the UNDP told Euronews.

The large-scale temporary basic income (TBI) scheme proposed by UNDP shows that a monthly investment of 0.07 per cent of developing countries’ GDP could provide financial security to 613 million working-aged women living in poverty, say the report authors.

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