Photo © Christina Hein
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Our aim

The FEMICIDE team’s work is aimed at raising awareness about and promoting exchange on the topic of femicide, the killing of women because they are women, within the UN framework.

Our work

Since 2012 the FEMICIDE team, which is wholeheartedly dedicated to ending all forms of violence against women, has called for global action, to end the killing of women because they are women, shown what has been done and what has to be done to improve the safety of women in conflict and in flight, made people aware of the abuse and femicide of older women, tackled the issue of contemporary forms of enslavement of women and girls, attracted attention to state responsibility with regard to femicide, and urged the establishment of a Femicide Watch in every country.

Sadly, there are still many forms of violence against women and so many manifestations of femicide needing to be addressed.

Through by now 12 volumes of the FEMICIDE publication and numerous events on the topic concerned the FEMICIDE team has raised awareness about heinous unprosecuted crimes, which for many years have been silently witnessed by UN Member States, and will not end their work until violence against women and femicide has been eradicated. A long fight lies ahead of us; however, we are full of hope.

Seeing early volumes of FEMICIDE and the outcomes of our FEMICIDE events being used as important resources by delegates in negotiating and adopting the first resolution on gender-related killings by the General Assembly in 2013 confirmed the relevance of our work. A second resolution followed in 2015.

Our means

To serve this purpose, the FEMICIDE team uses the FEMICIDE publication series, the Femicide Watch Online Platform and the FEMICIDE events.

Recent Activities


: Femicide Vol. IX: Femicide, State Accountability and Punishment


This issue of FEMICIDE deals with state and international responsibility. We all have a national and international obligation to put an end to such atrocities, to prosecute offenders and to lift up the many victims’ shattered lives. Governments can and must provide “safe places” for at-risk women and children. Ultimately, there must be a viable plan for providing women with the possibility of economic self-sufficiency, which in turn can assure independence and the chance of a better future.

: Femicide Vol. VIII: Abuse and Femicide of the Older Woman


Femicide Vol. VIII helps to underline the urgency of the vulnerable situation of the older woman and results in substantial changes in policy and attitudes. For this issue of FEMICIDE, we are extremely grateful to academic researchers Prof. Myrna Dawson, Prof. Janice Joseph, Garima Jain, Prof. Shalva Weil, Dr. Marie-Antoinette Sossou and Dr. Joseph Yogtiba, and the Prevalence study of violence and abuse against older women (AVOW) Team for their reports on the abuse and femicide of older women in Canada, African countries, India, Israel, Austria, Ghana, Belgium, Finland, Lithuania and Portugal, respectively.

: Femicide Vol. VII: Establishing a Femicide Watch in Every Country


On 25 November 2016 in Vienna, Austria, experts from around the world gathered for an ACUNS/OSCE UNODC symposium entitled “Combating Femicide”; Dr. Šimonović reiterated the importance of establishing a Femicide Watch in each country. Excerpts from this conference are featured in this publication; they include UNODC Deputy Executive Director Aldo Lale-Demoz, the Austrian Ambassador Clemens Koja. and Biljana Branković, member of the Group of Experts on Action against Violence against Women and Domestic Violence.


The Latin American region has one of the highest rates of femicide in the world. Twelve women and girls in the region are killed every day because of their gender. Every two hours, a woman dies in Latin America for the simple fact of being a woman. It is considered one of the most dangerous places in the world for a female (Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, 2018). Despite the high prevalence of femicide in Latin America, most countries have no comprehensive mechanism to effectively collect data on femicide. This chapter examines the challenges of collecting data on femicide in Latin America and recommends the establishment of a regional surveillance or a monitoring system, in the form of a Femicide Observatory, to collect uniform and consistent statistics throughout the region. The Latin American countries comprise those countries in which Romance languages are spoken by the majority of the population. The countries include (in Central and South America) Argentina, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, and Venezuela. Latin American countries also include Cuba, Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico.


We talk about how many women were raped last year, not about how many men raped women. We talk about how many girls in a school district were harassed last year, not about how many boys harassed girls…” - Jackson Katz (2013)

Femicide (i.e., gender-based murder of women) stands on an equal footing with all types of crime in not discriminating between countries. The only difference is that in some countries, it is more prevalent in comparison with others (see, generally, Strengthening understanding…, 2008). Canada and India are no exception, but the difference is that femicide is less common in Canada than in India. However, regardless of its incident rate, femicide is an unacceptable social reality that needs urgent attention from all the stakeholders. In this article, we will use Canada and India as ‘case studies’ to discuss some of the challenges in trying to collect reliable and valid data on femicide as well as identify some recommendations that can/ might help reduce the ‘dark figure’ of the actual number of femicide cases and how to improve the reliability of data collection of femicide. Because, without reliable and valid data, one cannot adequately inform prevention and intervention practices or policies to combat femicide.


On April 18-19, 2020, in Nova Scotia, Canada, a lone male, armed with multiple guns, went on a rampage, sparked in part by misogyny, killing at least 13 women and 9 men across multiple rural communities. The result was one of the deadliest mass killings in Canada’s recent memory. Although details have been painstakingly slow to be released, it is clear that at least some of these killings are femicide. Yet police releases, media reports and public discussions that followed the killings have so far not referred to this fact. This situation underscores what many of us know: every country, including Canada, needs a femicide watch or observatory to highlight the sexual aspects of violence experienced by women and girls as well as the sex/gender motivations and indicators frequently at play when women and girls are killed by men, locally and globally. Official narratives surrounding the killings of women and girls – whether a single female victim, multiple female victims, or a combination of female and male victims – often obscures that these are often, and typically, femicides. Simply put, the women and girls were killed because they were women and girls. Therefore, the lives of women and girls continue to be put at risk because the sex-based or gendered elements involved in their killings are often ignored or, if known, are not acknowledged. As a result, the necessary data to develop effective prevention initiatives are not collected or, if available, are not accessible to those actively working to prevent violence against women and girls. Femicide watches or observatories can contribute significantly to addressing these gaps, but only if there is a greater social understanding of femicide as well as the political will and commitment to develop appropriate prevention initiatives. Femicide watches/observatories can work at ensuring this occurs globally.