48,800 women and girls are estimated to have been killed by family members or intimate partners worldwide in 2022, according to a new report by the UN. This equates to an average of more than 133 women or girls having been killed by a relative each day. While far more men are killed in homicides worldwide than women (80 percent of killings were men in 2022), females are overrepresented in the home sphere, accounting for 66 percent of all victims of intimate partner killings.
As the following chart based on UN estimates shows, gender-based violence takes place in all regions worldwide. In 2022, Africa became the region with the highest number of girls and women killed in absolute terms - a position previously held by Asia. Africa also saw the highest rates of female intimate partner and family-related homicide of any region, at 2.8 women or girls per 100,000 female population. In terms of absolute numbers, Asia came in rank 2 with 18,400 women or girls killed that year, while the Americas saw the second highest rates with 1.5 women or girls killed per 100,000 female population. UN researchers note, however, that these figures are only estimates and that there are considerable gaps in the data.
This chart does not show the more granular breakdown of different subregions or countries. For example, according to the report, Eastern Europe continued to see a higher level of killings compared to other parts of the region, even though the number of cases has dropped from 1.1 victims per 100,000 women in 2014 to 0.9 victims per 100,000 women in 2022.
The UN defines gender-related killings as: “Intentional killings committed on the grounds of gender-related factors. These can include the ideology of men’s entitlement and privilege over women, social norms regarding masculinity, and the need to assert male control or power, enforce gender roles, or prevent, discourage or punish what is considered to be unacceptable female behavior.”
November 25 is the UN International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.