Acid Attacks against women must be stopped: Dr Wyatt

ISLAMABAD: The Higher Education Commission, alongside the Aurat Foundation and the Acid Survivors Foundation, sponsored a panel discussion on Tuesday in order to educate the people of Pakistan towards the eradication of violent crimes such as acid attacks against women. The panel discussion was attended by a crowd of over 150 university students and was headed by Dr. Marilyn Wyatt (wife of US ambassador to Pakistan Cameroon Munter) and Pakistani academy award winner Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy.

Talking to the audience, Dr. Wyatt asked for the eradication of acid based attacks within Pakistan, she also claimed that the main purpose of this event was to create awareness regarding the dangerous effect of acid related crimes amongst the youth of Pakistan. She further stated that “Pakistan’s youth demographic represented 60 percent of the nation’s citizenry and it was important that the youth sensitized itself to this important issue so that their mothers, sisters, and daughters do not suffer from such gruesome crime.”

With the help of organizations such as Aurat Foundation, USAID provides funding to civil society organizations which work to end gender-based violence and enhance women’s rights and economic opportunities. So far, the USAID has given 76 grants worth $3.5 million for Gender equity programs.

The discussion panel also comprised of Professor Hamid Hassan, a doctor who heads the burn unit at Benazir Bhutto International Hospitalin Rawalpindi; Dr. Khadija Tahir, a psychotherapist that treats acid survivors; Barrister Naveed Muzaffar Khan, a barrister defending acid attack victims; and representatives from the Acid Survivors Foundation and Aurat Foundation.