United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres lamented on Monday that “equality” between women and men in the world is an increasingly distant goal, which will be achieved at best “in 300 years”.
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“Gender equality is getting further and further away. At the current rate, (the organization) UN Women sets it at 300 years from now,” Mr. Guterres denounced in a speech at the opening of two weeks of debates in New York of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW). ) and two days away from International Women’s Day on March 8.
In the amphitheater of the General Assembly, the UN chief said that “the rights of women were abused, threatened, violated throughout the world” and that “the progress made over the decades was disappearing before our eyes”.
He took the example of Afghanistan, where the Taliban regained power in August 2021 and where “women and girls have been erased from public life”.
He did not name other countries, but in “many places women’s sexual reproductive rights are being rolled back and girls who go to school are at risk of abduction and assault.”
Mr. Guterres did not mention Iran, expelled on December 14, 2022 with “immediate” effect from the Commission on the Status of Women by a vote of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (Ecosoc), under the impetus of the United States, because of the repression of a revolt led since September by women.
“Centuries of patriarchy, discrimination and painful stereotypes have created a gender gap in science and technology”, sectors in which women represent only “3% of Nobel laureates”, a-t- he took as a concrete example.
He paid tribute to the French researchers “Emmanuelle Charpentier and American Jennifer Doudna who were historically the first team of women to win a Nobel Prize in science three years ago”, in chemistry in 2020.
“Men’s teams have won it 172 times,” Mr. Guterres said.
“The patriarchy strikes back. U.S. too. I am here to state clearly and forcefully: the United Nations stands with women and girls everywhere,” concluded the Secretary-General.
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