Hear Our Voices


WIZO co-sponsors a Special Emergency Session at the UN to address gender-based violence on October 7th.

Today WIZO New York co-organized and sponsored, along with other women’s organizations, a Special Emergency Session at the UN titled, “Hear Our Voices: Sexual and Gender-Based Violence in the October 7th Hamas Terror Attack.”


Attendees heard personal testimonies by medical crews and law enforcement officials recounting the atrocities Hamas committed on October 7th. We gave voice to those silenced, and stood on the principle: rape and sexual violence must never be used as a weapon of war.


Sheryl Sandberg, a longtime advocate for women and girls’ rights:
“This goes beyond politics. If we can’t agree that rape is wrong, then we have accepted the unacceptable. Then the question will be not what is happening in the Middle East but what is happening to our humanity?“

Speakers included Ambassador Gilad Erdan, former Chief Operating Officer of Facebook and founder of nonfprofit group Lean In Sheryl Sandberg, and Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton via a taped message.

WIZO New York and WIZO USA co-chair Mireille Manocherian played a huge role in organizing this incredibly important session.

Gilad Erdan UN Women Event 2

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also shared a video message at the event, calling on the global community to respond to “weaponized sexual violence where ever it happens with absolute condemnation.”

“There can be no justifications and no excuses,” Clinton said. “Rape as a weapon of war is a crime against humanity.”

“Organizations, governments and individuals who are committed to a better future for women and girls have a responsibility to condemn all violence against women,” Clinton implored. “It is outrageous that some who claim to stand for justice are closing their eyes and in their hearts to the victims of Hamas.”

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