Public sector workers shout slogans as they hold banners during a protest in Pretoria.
South African hairdresser Sandy feared for her life when a five-week coronavirus lockdown trapped her indoors with her abusive husband.
"He has threatened to break my business and destroy me," said the 42-year-old, who did not wish to use her real name.
More than 120,000 victims rang the national helpline for abused women and children in the first three weeks after the lockdown started on March 27 -- double the usual volume of calls.
"The country battles another deadly epidemic of gender-based violence," the Daily Maverick newspaper warned last month as it became clear the virus had hit South Africa hard.
At least 4,996 coronavirus cases have been recorded so far -- the highest in Africa -- including 93 deaths.
South Africa had been grappling with the scourge of violence against women long before the coronavirus lockdown was imposed.
A woman is killed every three hours in South Africa, according to police statistics -- a rate five times the world average. Half are murdered by men with whom they had a close relationship.
Official statistics suggest that more than 110 rapes are reported to the police per day.
Stay-at-home measures have only made things worse for women stuck in abusive relationships.
Fear of reprisal
President Cyril Ramaphosa has condemned the surge in domestic violence "during a time of such difficulty for our country".
"It is disturbing that... women and girls are being terrorised inside their own homes, forcing them to make desperate calls for help," Ramaphosa said in a emailed weekly note.
The anti-sexual violence TEARS Foundation received 30 percent more text messages and calls over the past month, said its founder Mara Glennie, a GBV assault survivor.
'Suffer in silence'
Victims who are able to break free would still be unable to travel far due to lockdown restrictions.
Glennie explained that they would first need to apply for a permit in court, adding another layer of complication.
The nature of the lockdown has made us suffer in silence," women's rights militant Brenda Madumise-Pajibo told AFP.
Cronje noted victims did not immediately reach out to Safe House once the lockdown started.
Safe House has since been struggling to find enough shelters and the national helpline is overwhelmed with calls.
The Covid-19 pandemic has caused disruptions to child protection services in more than 100 countries, leaving a large number of children at increased risk of violence, exploitation and abuse, said a global survey by UNICEF on Wednesday.
Afshan Mantoo, chairperson of Muslim Women’s Council of Victoria Inc. and head of the volunteer group, said she hoped the programme would help change attitudes about Muslim women’s participation in Australian society.
Six months after the World Health Organization declared a global emergency, the novel coronavirus has killed more than 680,000 people and infected more than 17.5 million, according to an AFP tally.
With more than one-fifth of the world's population now staying home owing to lockdowns and social distancing, there has been a spike in domestic violence cases across the world and law enforcement agencies are flooded with such calls.
An Emirati child Ahmed Hamdan Al Morshedi launched a challenge to visit the largest number of countries in Expo Dubai 2020 using the Expo passport. The winner is said to win a golden bar with the slogan of Expo.
"Six teams of NDRF (National Disaster Relief Force) have been deployed in six districts- Pathanamthitta, Idukki, Alappuzha, Ernakulam, Kottayam and Idukki. Two teams of Army have been deployed in Trivandrum and Kottayam districts. Air Force has been requested to be on standby in case of any emergencies”, the release from chief minister’s office said.
The aspirations and ambitions of the world for the future and the innovations, inventions and ideas prepared for it by its different countries will guarantee for future generations a dignified life and prosperity on the contrary, in a rare mixture which allows a greater rapprochement between peoples of the world and building new bridges of communication among them on the basis of full knowledge of all the elements that distinguish their
To add to already overloaded excitement the Expo 2020 Dubai also offers a unique sightseeing tour on the world's first compressed Air Train. The train called ‘Expo Explorer’ takes passengers on a sight-seeing journey while giving them a glimpse of the sustainable future of transport.