Crime & Justice

Feminists demand apology after Pakistani PM blames women for sexual violence

Islamabad, Jun 24 (EFE).- As many as 16 women’s rights and human rights groups on Thursday demanded that Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan issue an apology for a series of comments that, according to the activists, blame women for provoking sexual violence through the way they dress.

Khan’s point of view is “dangerously simplistic and only reinforces the common public perception that women are ‘knowing’ victims and men ‘helpless’ aggressors,” nonprofit Human Rights Commission of Pakistan said in a statement.

The prime minister, who has in the past faced criticism over similar comments, said in an interview with United States-based news website Axios – released on Monday – that a women wearing skimpy clothes would tempt men.

“If a woman is wearing very few clothes it will have an impact on the man unless they are robots,” Khan said.

He insisted that Pakistan was a very different society, which did not have discos or nightclubs.

“If you raise temptation in (such a) society to the point and all these young guys have nowhere to go, it has consequences,” the leader said.

HRCP and 15 other organizations, including the feminist groups Aurat March and Women’s Action Forum, have demanded an apology from Khan.

“We demand an immediate public apology from the Prime Minister and assurances that his highly flawed perception of how and why rape occurs does not inform the government’s attempts to tackle what is a serious and prevalent crime in Pakistan,” they said in a joint statement.

In April, Khan had already come under fire for his opinions on women’s clothing.

“If our religion gives us the concept of observing veil, then there is some philosophy behind it and the philosophy is to save the family system and to protect the society,” the prime minister had said in a TV program while responding to people’s questions.

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