GENEVA (11 February 2016) – United Nations human rights expert Dubravka Šimonović will visit Georgia from 15 to 19 February 2016 to assess the situation of violence against women and girls in the country and gather first-hand information from victims of violence.
“I am grateful to the Government of Georgia for the invitation to conduct the first official visit to the country by a UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences,” Ms. Šimonović said.
“Violence against women continues to be one of the most pervasive human rights violations globally, affecting every woman worldwide”, she stressed. “States have a primary responsibility to take effective action to eliminate violence against women, so it is ultimately up to State authorities to make its eradication a reality.”
During her five-day visit, the Special Rapporteur will meet with Government authorities, civil society representatives and other stakeholders in Tbilisi, as well as Kakheti and Shida Qartli regions.
The expert will also visit a shelter for victims of domestic violence, a camp for internally displaced persons and she will meet with individual victims of gender-based violence and minority women. “I hope that as a result of my interactions with government and civil society representatives, I will contribute to the current discussions and efforts in the fight against such violence in the country”, she said.
The Special Rapporteur will hold a press conference on the initial findings of her visit on Friday 19 February at 17:00 at the Courtyard Marriott Hotel (4 Freedom Square, Tbilisi). Access to the press conference is strictly limited to journalists.
Based on the information obtained during the visit, Ms. Šimonović will present a report with final findings and recommendations during the thirty-second session of Human Rights Council, in June 2016.
Ms.Dubravka Šimonović (Croatia) was appointed as Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences by the UN Human Rights Council in June 2015, to recommend measures, ways and means, at the national, regional and international levels, to eliminate violence against women and its causes, and to remedy its consequences. Ms. Šimonović has been member of the CEDAW Committee from 2002 to 2014. She headed the Human Rights Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Croatia and was the Minister Plenipotentiary at the Permanent Mission of Croatia to the UN in New York. She was also Ambassador to the OSCE and UN in Vienna. She co-chaired the Ad hoc Committee (CAHVIO) of the Council of Europe that elaborated the Convention on Preventing and Combatting Violence against Women and Domestic Violence (Istanbul Convention).She has a PhD in Family Law and published books and articles on human rights and women’s rights. Learn more, log on to: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Women/SRWomen/Pages/SRWomenIndex.aspx
The Special Rapporteurs are part of what is known as the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council. Special Procedures, the largest body of independent experts in the UN Human Rights system, is the general name of the Council’s independent fact-finding and monitoring mechanisms that address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world. Special Procedures’ experts work on a voluntary basis; they are not UN staff and do not receive a salary for their work. They are independent from any government or organization and serve in their individual capacity.
UN Human Rights, Country Page – Georgia: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Countries/ENACARegion/Pages/GEIndex.aspx
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