Many women in Western countries feel that their neighbourhoods are not safe. And in many cases they are not. Women still face discrimination and domestic violence. We do have some recourse in law. Imagine being a woman in a country where there would be no help, no ability to protect your daughters from child marriage. TrustLaw, an organization that fight corruption and crimes against women has published a report on the five most dangerous countries for women.
1. Afghanistan This one tops the list. Women face entrenched discrimination and violence, the prospect of being married before puberty, bearing children while still a pre-teen and facing the probability of dying in childbirth. Women have a one in eleven chance of dying in childbirth and with the lack of medical care and no access to birth control, that is an ever present danger. Illiteracy for women is around 87%. While matters have improved for some since the Taliban grip has loosened, women are always in danger of violence and those who speak up for change are often targeted for death.
2. Democratic Republic of Congo More than any other country, women in the DRC face sexual violence. It has been used as a weapon of war, the idea being that a raped woman has been “defiled” and will usually be rejected by family and husband.
3. Pakistan Child marriage, forced marriages are both fairly normal and follow cultural mores, especially in villages and countryside. Sexual violence against a woman may result in her murder by her family. TrustLaw has stated that at least 1000 so called honor killings are conducted every year. The recent publicity surrounding the attempted murder of a Pakistani school girl advocating for education serves as reminder to those who would seek education that violence is only a bullet away.
4. India There has recently been a spate of publicity about the horrific gang rape and murder that a young woman in Delhi endured. Gang rapes of children are not uncommon and many in society still blame the female child or woman for the violence. Because of infanticide and selective abortions there is a coming shortfall of about 50 million women. It is estimated that 100 million women in India are being trafficked, whether it is enslaved in brothels, or indentured labour.
5. Somalia There is no health care for most. Genital mutilation is again on the rise as lawlessness permeated the country. In addition to cultural mores that discriminate against girls and women, famine and fighting pose danger.
More detail on this report is available on the TrustLaw site.