Prominent landmarks around Dubai have turned orange to raise awareness about a global campaign against gender-based violence.
Al Wasl Dome at Expo 2020, the Burj Khalifa and Dubai Frame joined structures around the world that have lit up for the annual event.
The UN Women campaign is called 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence and began on November 25, coinciding with the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. It will run until December 10, which is also Human Rights Day.
“Orange the World: end violence against women now” is observed by 187 countries and more than 6,000 organisations around the world.
In the UAE, the campaign is supported by the General Women's Union and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation.
“Emirati women have been partners in all our achievements over the past 50 years. Therefore, our support for this UN Women campaign is a message of peace from the UAE and a call to stop all forms of violence against women, which hinders the prosperity and development of societies,” said Noura Al Suwaidi, secretary general of the General Women's Union.
The campaign’s colour was chosen to symbolise a bright future for women, free from all forms of gender-based violence around the world.
On the sidelines of the campaign, events and activities are being held to raise awareness and mobilise governments and the public to prevent gender-based violence.
Previously, landmarks such as the Great Pyramids of Giza, the Angel of Independence in Mexico City and the European Parliament buildings in Brussels lit up orange in solidarity with women and girls around the world.
“This global campaign raises awareness of the dangers of gender-based violence and calls for an immediate end to all forms of violence against women,” said Dr Mouza Al Shehhi, director of the UN Women Liaison Office for the GCC.
“It emphasises the need for urgent action and protection, since violence against women and girls is not only one of the most widespread, destructive and persistent violations of human rights, but also has a significant economic toll.
“Stopping all forms of gender-based violence requires addressing residual social and economic inequalities, along with securing education and work for women to enable them to overcome the challenges they face in many societies.”
The continuous amendments to UAE laws relating to women’s rights reveal the extent of the government’s aim of protecting and empowering women, including the continuous legislative amendments on divorce, dislodgement, alimony and all other matters related to marital separation.
The latest changes to the law grants foreign residents of the UAE the right to refer to the laws of their countries when it comes to divorce, among other matters. In addition, the UAE recently issued a new law to regulate and govern personal status and family matters for non-Muslims to ensure the stability of all residents of the nation.
The UAE was recently ranked first regionally and 24th globally in the “Women, Peace and Security 2021" index issued by Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security. The index charts indicators including inclusion, justice and security.