Equal rights for women in Europe: after 100 years of struggle we still haven't achieved it!

Press Release

Brussels, March 8, 2011

On the occasion of the International Day of Women, the European Coordination Via Campesina reiterates its commitment to fight for equal rights for women at all levels. The sad reality is that, to this day, women continue to suffer from male violence and discrimination - whether in the economic, social or cultural fields.

The European Union - in its attempt to resolve the economic and financial crisis without harming the interest of the financial and speculation sector - urges governments to undertake political reforms that have severe implications for the rights of people and directly impact labour laws, pensions, health, education ... when they are not simply calling for the privatization of public services. Women are the one's bearing the brunt of most of these reforms and austerity measures, the situation being particularly difficult for women farmers and those working in rural areas.

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Launch in Africa of the Vía Campesina Campaign condemning violence against women



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At the 2011 World Social Forum held in Dakar, we, the African peasant organisations members of la Vía Campesina, have decided to launch and communicate on behalf of our continent the campaign of our movement condemning violence against women, a campaign which was officially launched on an international scale at our fifth international conference in Maputo, in 2008.

In all societies, to varying extents, women and girls are victims of economic discrimination and physical, sexual and psychological violence, in both public and private spheres. Domestic violence, human trafficking, sexual harassment, genital mutilation, women being deprived of food, forced or early marriage, “honour” killings, femicide and rape as war weapons are all part of this horrific scenario. Furthermore, on the world scale, 70% of people who live in extreme poverty are women.

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All together, let's eliminate violence!

ECVC: 25 November: International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women

On the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, European Coordination Via Campesina would like to insist on the importance of ending all forms of violence against women.

It is fitting to remember the definition of violence adopted by the UN, which is: “any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life.”


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Women united for food sovereignty and against violence towards women


In Maputo, Mozambique, on the occasion of the international seminar on building alliances for food sovereignty and against violence towards women held in Maputo from July 26 to 29, La Via Campesina worked together with World March of Women (WMW), Friends of the Earth Intenational (FoEI) and women of the countryside from Asia and Africa and shared our ideas to plan our work on women.

We are currently witnessing the upholding of ancient forms of violence against women and the reinforcement of new ones. For instance, when Ttransnational companies take over land for the expansion of monocultures, peasant families are driven away. Women become more vulnerable as they can no longer guarantee food for themselves and their families. They often migrate and find precarious jobs with no rights and exploitative conditions.

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