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Eve Ensler To Testify Before U.S. Senate Committee on Rape and Violence Against Women in Democratic Republic of the Congo

05/12/2009

New York, NY - Playwright and V-Day Founder Eve Ensler will testify on the topic of rape as a weapon of war in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Wednesday, May 13 at 2:30pm before a joint hearing “Confronting Rape and Other Forms of Violence Against women in Conflict Zones” of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on African Affairs and the new Subcommittee on International Operations and Organizations, Human Rights, Democracy and Global Women’s Issues. Senators Barbara Boxer and Russel D. Feingold will preside over the hearing.

Ensler will share her experiences and knowledge of the issue, and provide recommendations for change. Since 2007, she has traveled to the DRC on numerous occasions and spoken out through articles, speeches, and advocacy placing a global spotlight on the wide-scale atrocities committed against women and girls in Eastern DRC. Together with Congolese women, UNICEF and V-Day have mounted a global campaign entitled STOP RAPING OUR GREATEST RESOURCE: Power to The Women And Girls of the DRC, raising awareness and funds, and developing strategies and programs to empower women on the ground.

"Before I went to the Congo, I'd spent the past 10 years working on V-Day, the global movement to end violence against women and girls. I'd traveled to the rape mines of the world - places like Bosnia, Afghanistan and Haiti, where rape has been used as a tool of war. But nothing I ever experienced felt as ghastly, terrifying and complete as the sexual torture and attempted destruction of the female species here. It is not too strong to call this a femicide, to say that the future of the Congo's women is in serious jeopardy. This is an economic war that is being fought on the bodies of women.” Ensler has stated.

For interviews, contact Susan Celia Swan, (917) 865-6603, press@vday.org.

About V-Day

V-Day is a global movement to end violence against women and girls that raises funds and awareness through benefit productions of Playwright/Founder Eve Ensler’s award winning play The Vagina Monologues and other artistic works. The V-Day movement has raised over $70 million and educated millions about the issue of violence against women and the efforts to end it, crafted international educational, media and PSA campaigns, launched the Karama program in the Middle East, reopened shelters, and funded over 10,000 community-based anti-violence programs and safe houses in Democratic Republic Of Congo, Haiti, Kenya, South Dakota, Egypt and Iraq. V-Day was named one of Worth magazine's "100 Best Charities" in 2001 and Marie Claire’s “Top Ten Charities” in 2006. The 'V' in V-Day stands for Victory, Valentine and Vagina. http://www.vday.org