Femicide worldwide

Today, as I anticipated on my last  post, I would analyze femicide worldwide.

Every year 66,000 women are violently killed globally.

The regions where the rate of crime is high, such as South Africa, South America, the Caribbean and Central America, they are also leading the ranking of femicide. The countries with the highest ranking are as follows: El Salvador (12 femicides every 100,000 women), Jamaica (10.9), Guatemala (9.7), South Africa (9.6) and the Russian Federation (8.7).

According to a UN study, 1 out of 4 women of these countries states that it is justifiable to be beaten or hit by husband, or partner, if she refuses to have sex with him or because of a quarrel. In my opinion, this is frightening, absurd!! How can some people justify that kind of crime??

Now, let’s try to see how is the situation in United States, Latin America, Africa, Asia and then we’ll see Europe and Italy’s data.


In United States 4 women are victims of femicide, daily. It is the leading cause of death for African American women and it is the second leading cause of death for all women between 20 and 54 years. The perpetrators of femicide are most often the husbands, followed by boyfriends and male family members.

One of the largest predictors of femicide in the United States is the appearance of physical abuse. This was found in 79% of all femicide cases in North Carolina.

Guns availability in the United States has had a substantial effect on femicide. Infact, according to a study by Karen D. Stout, it correlating to 67% of deaths.


There are a lot of femicide’s cases in Latin America. Many of these victims are young women raped, tortured, and mutilated. The majority of the female victims belong to the low classes.

Femicide is a low priority of state governments partly because of patriarchal beliefs and assumptions about the role of women in society. In a Report on the Violations of Women’s Rights in Guatemala by a United Nations Human Rights Committee, the state’s failure to enforce laws protecting women from femicide is seen as highly problematic.

Feminists in Latin America have been the first to adopt the word “femicide” to refer to the massive number of crimes in Ciudad Juarez (Mexico), where since 1992 more than 4,500 young women had disappeared, as I already said on my last post.


Femicide in Africa occurs in many different forms, including partner femicide, mass femicide due to AIDS, honor killing and mass femicide due to female genital mutilations.

In African Islamist countries, women have to wear head covering or hijabs; furthermore, they have to behave in specific ways that are considered appropriate for women (not working, not divorcing, not travelling without a male companion, etc.). Women who don’t follow the above mentioned rules often are killed or heavily punished.

Rape in North Kivu (Congo) and in Darfur is becoming a kind of genocide. The Cameroon’s government, in its presidency of G8 in 2012, has included in its targets the elimination of rape as a weapon of war.


In Asia and South Asia the situation is very serious.

What is the worst place to be born women? India. According to the “ranking of horrors” published for the G20 in Mexico in June 2012, the first place is India, where women and girls continue to be sold as slaves, given in marriage even at ten years old, burned alive and sexually abused. According to statistics of the Indian police in New Delhi, there is a sexual violence against women every 18 hours.

A UN Symposium on Femicide stated the six most widespread forms of femicide in India, which include female infanticide, the killing of girls under six years through starvation and violence, the killing of women due to forced abortions, honor killings, dowry murders and witch lynchings.

In Afghanistan the legal age for marriage is 16 years old, but, according to the UN, girls are forced to marry much earlier. Violence agaist women is widespread and often unpunished. Sometimes, women who go to the police suffer from further abuses. According to data from the British organization “Oxfam“, 87% of Afghan women said that they had suffered from physical, sexual or psychological violence.

The Special Rapporteur on violence against women for the Human Rights Council reported that the key factors behind gender-motivated killings of women in Asia and South Asia are the high level of importance placed on women’s chastity and their subordination in the greater society.


Germany has the record with 320 victims in 2009, followed by France (288 victims) and UK (245 victims). In 80% of cases the person who commits a violence is a known person. According to the UN, half of the women killed in Europe between 2008 and 2010 has killed by someone who loved her, a member of the family.

On 15th of May 2011, the “Convention on the prevention of violence against women and the fight against domestic violence” was signed in Istanbul by members of the European Council. However, the Convention will becoming binding on the member states of the European Councile only after that at least 10 states have ratified it. Five states have ratified quickly: Albania, Montenegro, Portugal, Turkey and Italy.


In Italy doesn’t exist a national observatory on femicide. Since 2005, the anti-violence centers collect women killed data from cases reported by the press. Only in 2012, according to the study carried out by the “Casa delle donne per non subire violenza” (which is situated in Bologna), femicides in Italy were 124. About 70% of women were killed by men with whom they had or had had a love relationship; about 80% of women are Italian, as well as theirs killers.

A new law on this issue has been approved by Italian Parliament, and soon I’ll talk about it!

foto inglese



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2 responses to “Femicide worldwide

  1. Pingback: La strage delle donne | LIVINGWOMEN

  2. Pingback: Femicides in Brazil Hit Civil War Proportions | The Free

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