In the South Mediterranean region, there is little reliable information about the prevalence and trends in Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG). However, some studies about the reality of women illustrate the magnitude of the problem and show alarming figures on VAWG. Advancing women’s rights and combating all forms of VAWG are priorities for Euro Mediterranean countries as stated in the 4th Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) Ministerial Declaration on “Strengthening the Role of Women in Society” (Cairo, 2017) and States are responsible for enacting and implementing laws and public policies to combat VAWG and ensure achieving gender equality.
In 2019, the Regional Civil Society Observatory (RCSO) on VAWG was established to follow up on the implementation of the 4th UfM Ministerial Declaration, particularly in the area of VAWG, Women, the Peace and Security Agenda (WPSA) and Preventing Violent Extremism (PVE). The RCSO was established under a three-year (2019-2021) regional project “Combating Violence against Women in the Southern Mediterranean Region”, funded by the EU and implemented by EuroMed Feminist Initiative (EFI) and a consortium of nine member organizations in Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine and Tunisia.
In December 2019, the RCSO launched a survey in these seven countries to assess the level of awareness of women towards the laws and services provided for victims of VAWG, as well as to know the personal experience , perception and values related to VAWG.