Experts call for an end to violence against women in politics

Experts call for an end to violence against women in politics

Experts said today in Honduras that gender inequality in politics is "a common practice" in the world and a human rights problem that requires greater political will, so they called for an end to violence against women in that area.

In the forum "Violence against women in politics: a human rights problem", held in Tegucigalpa, the specialist in human rights and gender equality, the Nicaraguan Isabel Torres, said that gender inequality in politics is a practice considered "natural" because it is part of the exercise of power.

The exercise of politics has "particular manifestations" in women, since it is a human rights problem and they face different signs of violence.

He regretted that women who hold a position in Parliament "are not given the floor, they are placed in the last positions to speak or the microphone is turned off in the sessions".

Torres indicated that many women who participate in politics face up to "acts of harassment, sexual harassment, threats, coercion, defamation and legitimacy."

The forum was sponsored by the National Democratic Institute, the United States Agency for International Development and the Pan American Development Foundation.

In the case of Honduras, the Nicaraguan expert indicated that the reforms to the electoral law and the Regulation of Parity and Mechanism of Alternation in the circles of power need to be "strengthened".

"The parity is not only half of the men, but they are in the eligible positions, it means that women can be in the top positions (of the forms)," he said.

The Parity Regulation establishes that the parties must integrate at least 40% of women's participation in their election templates, but in the Honduran Parliament, females have only a representation of 25.7%.

Torres demanded "greater willingness" from political parties to "place women in representation and that obviously means that there will be men who are not in that place."

In addition, she urged women to strengthen their leadership and promote their political career to achieve a position in the political arena.

"We need to put a halt to violence against women in political and public life because it harms their political rights and violates their human rights in equality and non-discrimination," said the Nicaraguan specialist.

According to the National Democratic Institute, women in Honduras face "obstacles" in political and public life related to practices and customs "deeply rooted" in Honduran society, which are based on "inequalities and discrimination."

"It is indicated that machismo is lived every day in the private sphere and in public spaces where political activity takes place," adds a report from the Democratic Institute.

The judge of the Electoral Tribunal of the city of Mexico, Alejandra Chávez, told Acan-Efe that the political parties have been "a little omitted" by not allowing the participation of more women in politics.

He said that violence against women is a "cultural and educational issue", so he considers it necessary to "raise awareness" that women and men have the same rights and the same capabilities.

"We have to educate children to understand that we have to move forward to improve our culture and that we have that capacity so that women and men can participate," said the Mexican electoral magistrate.


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