Human Rights Day Celebrated in Puntland
UNSOM celebrated the closing ceremony of the 16 Days of Activisms and the International Human Rights Day at the Puntland State University (PSU) in Garowe. The event was organized in collaboration with the Ministry of Women Development and Family Affairs (MOWDAFA) and the Puntland Human Rights Defender Office.
Under the theme “Let’s stand up for equality, justice and human dignity”, the commemoration started with drama work and poem messaged the protection and promotion of the rights of women and girls in the society. The event was attended by a large number of people, including the Puntland Vice President, the Minister of Women among other government officials, women groups and different segments of Puntland society, including elders and religious leaders together with UN and International NGOs based in Garowe.
Mohamed Yusuf, the Director of the Puntland Human Rights Defender office addressed the event explaining that despite efforts being made by concerned parties to eliminate gender-based violence, still women and girls are subjected to many forms of violence. He stated that any one who hurts a woman, hurts all the society.
Speaking on behalf of UN Family, UNSOM/UNDP Head of Office, Sayed Sahibzada said "women continue to suffer discrimination, violence and persecution”, “so do ethnic, racial and religious minorities and migrants”. He stated that internal conflicts continue to produce horrendous and widespread human rights abuses. He added that Puntland had made significant steps towards the promotion and protection of human rights.
Puntland Minister of Women, Mariam Ahmed Ali, said the violence against women and girls would not stop until all people take a clear position against it, saying that men themselves should join awareness campaigns and they should understand that camapigns conducted by women only, wouldn’t stop crimes against them.
Finally the Vice President of Puntland, Abdihakim Haji Omar “Amey” said that his government has done a lot to protect the rights of women but he urged the people not to leave the government to do that alone, it is everyone's responsibility.