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The Pope warns about the violence suffered by women

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The Pope warns about the violence suffered by women

In a powerful message, Pope Francis expressed his deep concern about the persistent violence, inequality and mistreatment suffered by women around the world, highlighting the crucial importance of girls’ education as a fundamental step towards more just societies.

During an audience with participants of the International Interuniversity Congress ‘Women in the Church: architects of the human’, the pontiff highlighted that women face significant discrimination when it comes to their training, a reality that he described as “feared” in many contexts. .

“The path to better societies passes precisely through the education of girls,” said the Pope, emphasizing the need to overcome the barriers that limit women’s access to education, a fundamental tool for empowerment and the construction of equitable societies. .

Francis praised the intelligence and heart of women, highlighting their unique capacity for compassion, intuition and natural tendency to care. In a world marked by hatred, violence and ideologies that suffocate the most beautiful feelings of the heart, the Pope stressed that the female contribution is more indispensable than ever.

«Our era is torn by hatred; “It is a time in which humanity needs to feel loved,” said the pontiff. In this context, he highlighted that women, with their ability to unite with tenderness, play an essential role in the construction of more just and humane societies.

Recalling that the Church “needs” women, describing them as daughters, mothers and wives, the Pope called on the participants of the congress to find adequate ways to further value the greatness and role of women in the People of God. .

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Pope Francis’ message resonates with special relevance in Colombia, where violence against women persists as a serious social problem. His call for the education of girls and the valuing of the female role highlights the urgent need to address gender violence and promote equality in all areas of Colombian society.

Terrifying panorama in Colombia

Domestic violence against women in Colombia has reached alarming levels, with recent reports exposing a significant increase in cases recorded throughout the country. This rise in domestic violence highlights a deeply rooted gender crisis, evidencing the urgent need for concrete actions to protect victims and prevent future attacks.

Until February 7, 2024, the Attorney General’s Office had reported 20 cases of female victims of feminicide (consummated or not consummated) and 84 alerts from Legal Medicine for attacks such as domestic violence, a figure that, added to the 848 alerts issued in 2023 due to the threat of feminicide, indicates a growing risk for women’s safety. The age range where women are most attacked is the population between 18 and 59 years old, accounting for 88% of feminicide cases in 2023.

What is worrying is the delay in justice. 54% of the cases are in the investigation phase, 8.6% in the investigation phase, 47.3% of the cases are in the trial stage, and only 7.3% are in the execution of sentences. This slowness is the breeding ground for impunity. These numbers do not support the self-aggrandizement of Former Prosecutor Francisco Barbosa at the end of his administration, launching a figure of 96% of cases resolved regarding femicides during his administration.

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Experts point out that domestic violence against women is a complex phenomenon influenced by sociocultural factors such as machismo, gender inequality, and the stigmatization of the victims. The situation has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, during which an increase in cases was reported due to lockdowns, which left many women isolated with their attackers.

According to data from the National Police, 109,674 cases of domestic violence were registered in 2023, of which 70.9% were female victims and 28.8% were male victims. During 2023, at least 213 women were victims of domestic violence every day. .

Faced with this critical situation, human rights organizations and feminist groups have intensified their calls for the Colombian government to implement more robust and effective measures. These include improving victim reporting and care systems, strengthening psychological and legal support networks, and education and awareness campaigns aimed at dismantling gender stereotypes and promoting egalitarian and respectful relationships.

International Women’s Day approaches in the midst of this gloomy panorama, serving as a powerful reminder of the pending challenges in the fight against gender violence in Colombia. The recent figures are not only a call to action for authorities and society, but also a reminder of the resilience and strength of Colombian women, who continue to seek justice and a future free of violence.

A report from the Pares organization warns with concern about the high rates in the main departments, since it is where there are the most cases. However, there are others like Pereira where there are no secretaries specialized in addressing this problem. “It is worrying that in the governorates of Bolívar, Santander, Boyacá, Caldas, Magdalena and in cities such as Cali, Barranquilla, Cartagena, Santa Marta, Pereira, and Bucaramanga, there are no secretariats specialized in dealing with this type of cases.”

As the country faces this rising wave of domestic violence, the collective response of government institutions, civil society and the international community will be crucial to changing the course of this crisis and ensuring the safety and dignity of all women in Colombia.

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