[Brussels, 20/02/2014] All over Europe, EWL members rose and danced for justice to end violence against women.
In Czech Republic, they chose to dance to denounce cyber-violence targeting women. This phenomenon reminds us that internet is not a safer than other areas. As it occurs in every other spheres, violence is gendered, and part of its manifestation touch specifically girls and women because of their sex. The consequences can be as traumatizing as in the so-called “real world”. OBR Prague, organized by the Czech Coordination of the European Women’s Lobby, with the support of proFem o.p.s., V-Day Prague and Hollaback! Czech, raise awareness on that unconsidered issue.
In Poland, 30 cities danced on OBR Hymnal, Break the Chain. Violence against women and girl is not a priority issue in Poland. The organizers of the event denounce the lack of justice, of data and of support for victims. On the 14th of February 2014, the campaign “My name is Billion” gathered numerous people determined to raise the authorities’ awareness on that issue.
At 5:30 p.m., the Mall of Cyprus has been invaded by girls, women and men, coming to dance to put an end to violence against women. Organized by the Mediterranean Institute of Gender Studies, the event was a great success.
In Austria, the flashmob happened in front of the Parliament, in Vienna. They danced and sang, asking the authorities for acknowledging this issue and proposing solutions.
In Belgrade, Serbia, a concert was organized to make people dance and rise for justice and against patriarchy. In this country, “femicide” is still an unknown word, traducing the invisibility of this phenomenon. OBR aimed at provoking a public debate on violence against women.
In Berlin, Germany, the participants where asking for: the right for victims of domestic and sexual violence to be protected and supported, more security for victims of human trafficking, stopping the discriminatory representations of women and men in the medias. In a video screened before the flashmob, German politicians declared their will to take measure to put an end to this violence.
In Zagreb, Croatia, women and solidary men came to listen to the concert and dance together for One Billion Rising. At the end, they let lanterns rise to the sky, for justice. Croatian Hockey Players also recorded a video to express their support to the movement.
The inauguration of the photo exhibition “See” portraying women victims of violence (by Eric van der Burg and Kirsten van den Hul), launched One Billion Rising in Amsterdam (Netherlands). It has been followed by the discourses of the journalist Margriet van der Linden, and of the Dutch MP of the Labour party, Ahmed Marcouch. Everybody danced, to unveil the taboo around violence against women and girls.
In Macedonia, an event was held on the main square in Skopje as part of global action One Billion Rising which aims to raise public awareness about zero tolerance for various types of violence, rape and human trafficking. This year the event emphasised the need to search for justice.
The event was organized in Skopje, as well as in two other cities in the country, Bitola and Tetovo.
Macedonia is currently preparing a new law on prevention of domestic violence, which will strengthen the role of institutions in the protection of victims of violence, and thus will allow for easier and faster access to justice, a fact which emphasizes in this year’s campaign .
Bellow are several links of the event in Macedonia as well as some photos
In Copenhagen (Denmark) the event took place on the 14 February 2014, from 19 pm to 21 pm. It started with a photo exhibition, followed by presentations on “Equal Pay and Maternity in Denmark” “Victims of Trafficking in Human Beings”, and by debates. Finally, about 20 women performed a danced flash mob in the Central Station on Break the Chain.
In London (United Kingdom), for the second year, OBR took place in Trafalgar Square. From 12am to 1:30 pm, the public could assist to a press conference with politicians and celebrities, to speeches and performances, and had the opportunity to dance altogether to end violence against women and girls. This year, the focus was on the need for justice. They called for an end to abuses such as sex gang, exploitation, female genital mutilation, online trolling, but also domestic violence and sexual assaults. They specifically demanded the modernization of compulsory Sex and Relationship Education in British Schools, improvement in immigration detention centres (to ensure that vulnerable women are safe), and the repeal of visa laws that tie domestic workers to their employers.