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this type of violence is gender-based, meaning that the acts of violence are committed against women and girls expressly because they are female.The UN Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women states, "violence against women is a manifestation of historically unequal power relations between men and women" and "violence against women is one of the crucial social mechanisms by which women are forced into a subordinate position compared with men."Violence against women and girls is a problem of pandemic proportions.
A study in 2002 estimated that at least one in five women in the world had been physically or sexually abused by a man sometime in their lives, and "gender-based violence accounts for as much death and ill-health in women aged 15–44 years as cancer, and is a greater cause of ill-health than malaria and traffic accidents combined." Certain characteristics of violence against women have emerged from the research.
This is in part because many kinds of violence against women (specifically rape, sexual assault, and domestic violence) are under-reported, often due to societal norms, taboos, stigma, and the sensitive nature of the subject.
The UN Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women (1993) states, "violence against women is a manifestation of historically unequal power relations between men and women, which have led to domination over and discrimination against women by men and to the prevention of the full advancement of women, and that violence against women is one of the crucial social mechanisms by which women are forced into a subordinate position compared with men." Several forms of violence are more prevalent in certain parts of the world, often in developing countries.
There is no widely accepted current definition that covers all the dimensions of gender-based violence rather than the one for women that tends to reproduce the concept of binary oppositions: masculinity versus femininity.
The history of violence against women remains vague in scientific literature.
Moreover, the definition stated by the 1993 Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women also supported the notion that violence is rooted in the inequality between men and women when the term violence is used together with the term 'gender-based.' In Recommendation Rec(2002)5 of the Committee of Ministers to member states on the protection of women against violence, the Council of Europe stipulated that VAW "includes, but is not limited to, the following":a.