Around 87,000 women were murdered across the globe in 2017 — most of them by a family member or intimate partner, according to a new report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).
Of the 87,000, more than half (58 percent) of female victims were killed by a family member or intimate partner. This amounts to an average of 137 women killed every day, or six women killed every hour, by someone they know.
The report, released in time for the U.N. International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, is based on homicide statistics provided by international governments, according to the BBC. While an overwhelming majority (eight out of 10) of homicide victims around the world are men, the survey found that women make up a vast majority of victims killed by a person close to them.
At 20,000 homicides, Asia had the highest number of women killed by a family member or partner, followed by Africa (19,000), the Americas (8,000) Europe (3,000) and Oceania (300). But the risk of being murdered by a partner or family member was highest for women in Africa, where the rate of such homicides per 100,000 female population was 3.1. The risk was lowest in Europe, where the rate was 0.7 per 100,000 population.
The report acknowledges that many nations have tried to address violence against women through “the development and enforcement of laws that prohibit all forms of violence against women, laws that eliminate discrimination against women, the implementation of policies, and strengthening the capacities of institutions.” But the report also found that in spite of these measures, “tangible progress in both protecting and saving the lives of female victims of intimate partner/family-related homicide has not been made in recent years.”
To do better, the report says, countries should focus on making police and justice system more accessible to women, and ensuring that support services — like shelter, protective orders and legal counsel — are available to women who are facing violence at home. Also crucial, according to the report, is “developing cultural norms that move away from violent masculinity and gender stereotypes.”
“The killing of women by their partner is often the culmination of long-term violence and can be prevented,” the report concludes. “Local, national and international institutions need to scale up their efforts to help and protect women who fall victim to such violence.”
Read the full story at the BBC.