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A politically Christian conservative group in South Africa has called on men to protect women. "Violence against women is largely perpetrated because men regard women as possessions and sexual objects," said African Christian Democratic Party leader Steve Swart in a statement Sunday. "It is this attitude which we must change."

Swart said, "Good men need to speak up every time they hear a woman being disrespected, objectified and violated even by words." The statement was given at as part of the ACDP's campaign to raise awareness of of abuse of women and children. The ACDP's Vikiela (isiZulu for protect) campaign highlighted 16 issues relating to violence against women, said Swart.

These issues include: trafficking, sexual harassment, child abuse, abuse by teachers, substance abuse and VAW, HIV/Aids as a result of violence against women, prostitution, domestic violence, rape by male nurses, ukhuthwala (abduction and forced marriage of girls who are frequently under-aged), rape and prison rape.

“We can no longer enshrine a patriarchal culture nor condone violence with attitudes at the expense of our women,” said Swart.

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