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News : International : Organization of American States (OAS) Last Updated: Apr 12, 2019 - 11:30:03 AM

Committee of Experts expresses concern over the statements of the Vice President of Guatemala
Apr 12, 2019 - 11:19:27 AM

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The Committee of Experts of the Follow-up Mechanism to the Inter-American Convention on the Prevention, Punishment and Eradication of Violence against Women "Belém do Pará Convention" (MESECVI) expresses deep concern at the statements made by the Vice President of Guatemala, Jafeth Cabrera, who normalized, diminished and ignored the seriousness of violence against women during a speech at the Secretariat for the Executive Coordination of the Presidency.
The authority noted that "how many times have we left the wife with a black eye or the wife to the husband. Because they all attack men, but women are sometimes aggressive and do not stay quiet, and many of them are asking us what time you're coming." This Committee is emphatic in pointing out that these declarations not only confuse society but also foster a culture of intolerance that affects democratic coexistence, reinforces and perpetuates stereotypes and discriminatory gender roles and legitimizes violence against women.
The Committee has previously expressed its concern about the proliferation of political discourses that promote violence against women. Through the Declaration on Gender Equality and Women´s Empowerment for the Good of Humanity, it pointed out that discrimination and violence against women constitute violations of human rights, so that justifications based on beliefs or religious or cultural values are not admissible.
Although freedom of expression is a right of all people (Article 13 of the American Convention on Human Rights), Article 6 of the Belém do Pará Convention establishes the right of women to be free from any form of discrimination, and to be valued and educated free of stereotyped patterns of behavior and social and cultural practices based on concepts of inferiority or subordination.
The international community and this Committee recognize that violence against women is a cross-cutting and particular phenomenon that must be dealt with in a comprehensive and differentiated manner. For this and all of the above, this Committee urges the authorities to take all necessary measures to prevent the proliferation of discourses that encourage violence against women, and invites the State to intensify efforts to effectively implement the Belém do Pará Convention, the recommendations of this Committee and other international legislation on the human rights of women and girls.
The Committee of Experts is the technical body of the MESECVI responsible for the analysis and evaluation of the implementation process of the Belém do Pará Convention. It is composed of independent experts, appointed by each of the States Party among its nationals, who exercise their functions in a personal capacity.

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