International trade union movement reaffirms its support for the World March of Women
The World March of Women (WMW) is set to close its third “international action” with a series of activities in Bukavu, in the province of South Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Launched for the first time in 2000, WMW is a vast global movement mobilising groups and organisations (including the international trade union movement) fighting for the eradication of the causes of poverty and violence against women.
WMW will bring together, in Bukavu, an international delegation of 250 women from over 160 countries, alongside 900 Congolese women from the nation’s ten regions.
During its latest World Congress in Vancouver in June of this year, the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) reaffirmed its priority to combat all types of violence obstructing women’s rights to participate fully in society.
Women in eastern DR Congo in particular are victims of extreme violence perpetrated on a massive scale. For over ten years, rape and sexual violence have been systematically used in the region as a weapon of war, to spread fear, and as a method of ethnic cleansing.
The ITUC has repeatedly condemned the fact that in spite of successive high-level missions and reports, the extreme violence against women has continued to grow over the years, as the Congolese and international authorities regrettably stand by, powerless to tackle the problem.
Women members of the Congolese unions, the CDT, CSC and UNTC, together with other civil society groups in DR Congo, have for several years been involved in a broad campaign to combat violence against women.
The women trade unionists gathering in Bukavu to take part in the WMW activities will also participate in a trade union conference on 14 and 15 October.
The aim of the conference is to strengthen women’s participation in social dialogue as a key tool in conflict prevention and resolution and especially as a means of protecting women victims of war.
Addendum (21.10.10). Read the ITUC report here about their presence on the world march.