The head of the UN: It will take another 300 years to achieve gender equality
"Progress towards gender equality is disappearing before our eyes," United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres told the Commission on the Status of Women on Monday.
Speaking to the UN's key women's rights group, Guterres said gender equality is '300 years away' according to recent assessments by UN Women, the UN organization dedicated to gender equality and women's empowerment.
Guterres cited high maternal mortality rates, girls being forced into early marriage and girls being abducted and attacked for attending school as evidence that the hope of achieving gender equality is "growing ever more distant".
"Women's rights are being abused, threatened and violated around the world," Guterres said, naming several countries in particular, including Afghanistan, where he said "women and girls have been erased from public life."
The report, presented to the Human Rights Council in Geneva, also noted the increase in forced, underage marriages, the ban on excluding women from other public spaces such as parks and gyms, and other restrictions that limit women's ability to work and travel independently in Afghanistan.
'Centuries of patriarchy, discrimination and harmful stereotypes have created a huge gender gap in science and technology,' Guterres said. 'Let's be clear: global frameworks are not working for the world's women and girls. They must change.'