United Nations, Feb 2: Sex assaults on an infant in India and on a girl in Pakistan are "heart-breaking" but the "scourge" of violence against girls affects all countries, Stephane Dujarric, the spokesperson for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has said.
Asked by a reporter, who referred to the two recent cases in India and Pakistan and asked what advice the UN would give the two countries to stop the violence, he said the UN and its agencies were working with governments to get the message across to communities against the attacks on girls and women.
"First these two cases that you are referring to are heart breaking," Dujarric said on Thursday.
But he added: "What is clear is that no country on this planet is immune from the scourge of violence against women, violence against girls. We see it in all countries, North, South, East and West."
An eight-month-old infant girl was raped in New Delhi on Sunday and a 28-year-old cousin has been arrested and charged in the assault.
Last month, a seven-year-old girl was raped and murdered in Kasur, Pakistan.
Both incidents have caused outrage in their respective countries and calls for action to protect children and women.
About the UN actions to fight violence against girls and women, Dujarric said: "Through various programmes, through UN Women, through UNFPA (UN Fund for Population activities), UNICEF and others, UN is working with national governments to try to get messages through to communities to respecting girls, to respecting women."
"It is about equal rights, access to health, access to education (for women and girls). It is about empowerment of women," he added.
"Through a number of development programmes the UN is trying to face the issue."