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HRC44: Nordic and Baltic countries address the need to ensure accountability for women and girls in humanitarian settings 

Delivered by Denmark
Human Rights Council 44th session
Accountability for women and girls in humanitarian settings.
13 July 2020
[Check against Delivery]

Mdm. President,
I have the honor to deliver this statement on behalf of the Nordic and Baltic countries: Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Sweden and my own country, Denmark. We appreciate the strong focus on the need for accountability for women and girls in humanitarian settings at this Council.
This year, 168 million people are in need of humanitarian protection and assistance. This is the highest number in decades. While humanitarian emergencies affect entire communities at a time, the consequences are most severely felt by women and girls.

The COVID-19 pandemic is a clear example of this. While countries across the world are confronted by a health emergency, a ‘shadow pandemic’ of grave social and economic consequences is rolling out, affecting women and girls disproportionally. Hence, the crisis is very much associated with a sharp rise in incidents of sexual and gender-based violence, as societies are torn apart, and protective structures broken down. The severity of consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic is multiplied when affecting countries, regions or groups of people already suffering from other ongoing humanitarian crises.

We must not turn a blind eye to this. It is our responsibility to address the dire consequences of humanitarian conflicts and humanitarian emergencies for the enjoyment of all human rights by all women and girls. We are fully committed to ensuring accountability for all women and girls in humanitarian settings.
I thank you.

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