|Phạm Anh Khoa (first left) was invited to partner with UNFPA Việt Nam on the 40th Anniversary of Cooperation between UNFPA and the Vietnamese Government in July 2017. — VNS Photo Thu Trang|
HÀ NỘI — In the wake of allegations of sexual harassment against the popular singer Phạm Anh Khoa, initially disseminated via social media, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Việt Nam is dissolving its partnership with singer Khoa, who had served as an activist on the prevention of violence against women and girls in the country.
The artist was invited to partner with UNFPA Việt Nam on national campaigns to address gender-based violence in 2013-2014, and on the 40th Anniversary of Cooperation between UNFPA and the Vietnamese Government in July 2017.
Violence against women and girls is a global scourge. It is one of the gravest violations of human rights, and a formidable obstacle in ending gender inequality.
Globally, on average, one in every three women experiences some form of violence in her lifetime, be it physical, sexual or emotional, often at the hands of a spouse or intimate partner or a person in her immediate circle.
In Việt Nam, the National Survey on Domestic Violence against Women, supported by the UN in 2010, showed that 58 per cent of ever-married women said that they had experienced at least one form of violence from someone close, at some point in their lives. Since then, a lot of work has been done and investments made by public and non-governmental actors to raise awareness, and make legal, policy and behavioral changes to end all forms of gender-based violence. Progress has been made, but violence against women still remains a reality at all levels of society.
In Việt Nam, Phạm Lịch, Nga My and M.P (who remain anonymous), who have worked with Anh Khoa, have recently shared their stories of sexual harassment on social media.
UNFPA and the wider UN family in Việt Nam applaud the courage of women who overcome fear and prejudice by speaking up. Stories of survivors will raise awareness of this long-concealed issue, and allow all of society to come together to address it. — VNS