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"We must combat violence against women"

One of the Nordic flagship policies in gender equality, combating violence against women, was raised when the Norwegian Minister for Gender Equality, Audun Bjørlo Lysbakken, addressed the Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW54) and the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon, on Wednesday 3 March.


Audun Bjørlo Lysbakken, Norwegian Minister for Gender Equality

Silje Bergum Kinsten/

"As long as women are subjected to violence, we will never achieve gender equality – in the north or the south," Lysbakken, the Norwegian minister, said in his opening speech to delegates from all over the world on the third day of the Session in New York.

According to the WHO, every third women in the world is subjected to violence at some point in her life.

"Violence against women is never acceptable and can never be tolerated. We must combat violence against women," Lysbakken said before receiving a standing ovation from CSW54.

The minister also stressed the importance of improving the status of women as a means of generating economic growth and development.

"Raising the status of girls and women is a prerequisite for economic development. Ignoring that slows development," he concluded from the podium he shared with speakers such as the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon.

In the wake of the effusive applause from the body of the hall, the chair surmised that many of the delegates would like to move to Norway.

Delegates from all over the world who work on gender equality and the status of women are gathered for CSW54 in New York. This year's Session focuses on what the world has achieved on the gender-equality front since the UN's Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, 1995. The Nordic Council of Ministers for Gender Equality is taking part in CSW54.