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U.S. Embassy joins Belizeans in bringing awareness to Gender-based violence

Posted: Friday, December 9, 2022. 9:45 am CST.

By Zoila Palma Gonzalez: On Wednesday, officials from the United States Embassy in Belize joined civil society organizations and leaders to bring awareness to Gender-based violence.

In observance of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, U.S. Ambassador Michelle Kwan presided over a candlelight vigil to honor survivors of abuse and advocate for the elimination of all forms of gender-based violence.

Ambassador Kwan was joined by Governor General of Belize Dame Froyla Tzalam, Belmopan City Mayor Sharon Palacio, the diplomatic corps, and Belizeans representing government, civil society, and academia.

Gender-based violence is an abuse of human rights and fundamental freedoms. It remains a direct threat to economic security, democracy, and development.

The U.S. Embassy says that preventing and responding to this “shadow pandemic” is a cornerstone of the U.S. government’s commitment to advancing gender equity and equality globally.

“Belize, we stand with you, steadfast in this fight to protect our communities,” underscored Ambassador Kwan. “We need immediate and concrete action to elevate actions to counter gender-based violence. It requires all our attention, our sustained advocacy efforts, and innovative solutions to put an end to this atrocity, once and for all. Protecting human rights is vital to the growth of our democracies and a governance imperative.”

The U.S. Embassy says that in partnership with key Belizean stakeholders, the United States remains committed to combatting the root causes of gender-based violence.

“Through U.S.-funded programs and partnerships with the Belizean government and civil society organizations, the U.S. Embassy is working to pursue justice for victims and to support the safety of women, girls, gender-diverse persons, and other Belizean marginalized communities,” a statement from the U.S. Embassy noted.

 

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