Refugees Special Envoy Angelina Jolie and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau were at a special UN peacekeeping event that wrapped up on Wednesday in #Canada.
While in Vancouver, Angelina Jolie advocated for the right of women and girls to live a life free of violence. “Even if we accept that sexual violence has nothing to do with sex, that it is a crime, and that it is used as a weapon, many people still believe that it is simply not possible to do anything about it,” she said. It is hard, but not impossible, she added: “We have the laws, the institutions, and the expertise in gathering evidence. We are able to identify perpetrators. What is missing is the political will.” Prime Minister Trudeau thanked Ms. Jolie for being “a steadfast voice in support of the world’s most vulnerable.”
“Sexual violence is everywhere – in the industry where I work, in business, in universities, in politics, in the military, and across the world. All too often, these kinds of crimes against women are laughed off, depicted as a minor offense by someone who cannot control themselves, as an illness, or as some kind of exaggerated sexual need. But a man who mistreats women is not oversexed. He is abusive.”
The actress has dedicated herself to the fight to end sexual violence, acting as a Special Envoy of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Her speech called for sexual violence to be recognised around the world as a weapon and “a critical obstacle to achieving women’s equality and our full human rights.”
“It is cheaper than a bullet, and it has lasting consequences that unfold with sickening predictability that make it so cruelly effective,” she continued. “This is rape and assault designed to torture, to terrorize, to force people to flee, and to humiliate them.”