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NEW YORK Women's Joel Heath Jersey , Nov. 24 (Xinhua) -- For the first time ever, both the iconic Empire State Building and United Nations Headquarters in New York will be bathed in orange light on Monday night in celebration of UN-Women's "Orange YOUR Neighborhood" campaign ahead of the International Day to End Violence Against Women.

"Together, we must end this global disgrace," UN Secretary- General Ban Ki-moon said at a special pre-lighting ceremony at the Empire State Building Monday morning.

"It is up to everyone to play their part; women's rights are not only women's business," Ban said. "Men and boys are finally taking their place as partners in this battle."

The secretary-general attended the ceremony in midtown New York where he was joined by American actress Teri Hatcher Women's Kendall Lamm Jersey , his wife Yoo Soon-taek, and Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, executive director of the UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) for a ceremony to "flip the switch" ahead of the Empire State Building's illumination Monday night.

"Orange YOUR Neighborhood" is part of the secretary-general's campaign UNiTE to End Violence against Women, which runs between Nov. 25 and Dec. 10.

The hashtags #Orangeurhood and #16days are being used to raise awareness on social media.

To raise awareness and trigger action to end the global scourge of violence against women and girls, the UN observes International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on Nov. 25.

Sobering numbers show that one in three women have experienced physical or sexual violence Women's Ka'imi Fairbairn Jersey , mostly by an intimate partner; about 120 million girls have been forced into intercourse or other sexual acts at some point in their lives; and 133 million women and girls have undergone female genital mutilation.

Ending violence against women is one of UN Women's key priorities, with myriad programs to address the pandemic globally. UN Women also coordinates the UN secretary-general's UNiTE campaign, supports widespread social mobilization through its Say NO -- UNiTE social media platforms on Facebook and Twitter, and manages the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women.

Despite recent progress, violence continues to plague one billion women worldwide.

According to UN-Women Women's Kendall Langford Jersey , among all women killed in 2012, nearly half died at the hands of a partner or family member. And far too often, crimes go unpunished and perpetrators walk free.

This year alone, more than 200 girls have been kidnapped in Nigeria, and we have seen graphic testimony from Iraqi women of rape and sexual slavery during the conflict there Women's Lamarr Houston Jersey , Ban said.

And here in the United States, there have been high-profile cases of sexual violence involving sports teams and on university campuses. And many other cases go unreported and unpunished, Ban added.

"This is outrageous, and it must stop," the secretary-general declared Women's Jeremy Lane Jersey , calling for an end to the "mindsets and traditions that encourage, ignore or tolerate violence."

The campaign to end violence against women calls on everyone around the world to display the color orange to symbolize their commitment and hope for a safe future for all women. People will tie orange ribbons on landmarks. Marchers dressed in orange will raise awareness and discuss community-wide solutions.

"We need this eye-catching color everywhere so that the message is loud and clear: we all need to work together to stop violence against women and girls right now," said Mlambo-Ngcuka in an earlier press release.

In New York's Times Square, one of the world's most fabled crossroads, the NASDAQ and Reuters Tower screens will flash the color along with anti-violence messages in hopes of reaching a wide audience. The United Nations Secretariat will be lit up orange at 7 p.m. on Monday (12:00 a.m. GMT on Tuesday).

"That includes men and boys standing up for what's right and working with us and the women's movement to tackle gender inequality. We have to end this universal violation of human rights Women's Benardrick McKinney Jersey ," Mlambo-Ngcuka added.

Several events have been organized around the world in solidarity. In Latin American, a marathon in Mexico City; in Africa, a film forum hosted in Uganda screening stories focusing on the experiences of women's lives; in Asia-Pacific, public spaces in India will turn orange to promote awareness among local communities.

Meanwhile, in the Middle East Women's Kevin Johnson Jersey , activities are planned, many with a focus on violence against women in Gaza. High-profile events in Eastern Europe and Central Asia include a series of awareness-raising forums on the violence that young girls face in high schools.

Media outlets and their journalists are also getting involved by either wearing orange or using it in their studios and urging audiences to do their part to end violence against women and girls.

The private sector has played a catalytic role this year. For example, United Colors of Benetton is launching a campaign which will contribute to raising awareness.

"We know what works; now we are insisting on the commitment of political action and commensurate resources to that agenda," Mlambo-Ngcuka said.

The good news is that momentum is growing as the world gears up in 2015 to mark the 20th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action, as well as the end of the Millennium Development Goals and the framing of a bold new global development agenda.

"Together we must make 2015 the year that marks the beginning of the end of gender inequality Women's Nick Martin Jersey ," Mlambo-Ngcuka said. "Now is the time for action."

Several events planned at UN Headquarters in New York on Tuesday to mark the official Day will be attended by the First Lady of New York City, Chirlane McCray and actress Teri Hatcher, UN officials said here.

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