Can be found under: El Salvador (March 2010)
The present report contains the findings of the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences, following her follow-up mission to El Salvador, last visited by the mandate in 2004 (E/CN.4/2005/72/Add.2). She explores the extent to which the recommendations made in the previous report have been implemented by examining the most prevalent forms of violence encountered currently by women and girls in El Salvador, the State response to such violence, and the main remaining challenges.
Despite the Government’s intention to fulfil its due diligence obligations in the area of gender equality and violence against women, significant challenges remain. As the previous mandate holder pointed out, the failure of authorities to investigate, prosecute and punish those responsible for gender-based violence contributed to an environment of impunity that resulted in little confidence in the justice system; impunity for crimes, socio- economic disparities and the machista culture fostered a generalized state of violence, subjecting women to a continuum of multiple violent acts, including murder, rape, domestic violence, sexual harassment and commercial sexual exploitation. The discussions held and the information received during the visit suggested that the situation has changed little in El Salvador. In addition to the effective implementation of the law, remaining challenges relate to sexual and reproductive rights, in particular with regard to the consequences of the absolute ban on abortions, and the need to establish a comprehensive
system on data collection to guide policy and monitor progress in the field of violence against women.
In the light of the information received, the Special Rapporteur considers the recommendations in her predecessor’s report still relevant and applicable, and thus supports and reiterates the need to take action in five ways: (a) to create a gender-sensitive information and knowledge base, including through the creation of a statistical commission; (b) to ensure the protection of women and girls through legislative, investigative and judicial reforms, including through the establishment of a specialized investigation and prosecution unit on femicides; (c) to strengthen institutional infrastructure, including through the allocation of appropriate resources, to ensure sustainability and effectiveness; (d) to initiate further training and awareness programmes; and (e) to monitor the implementation of and enforce international and regional human rights standards.