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West African Papers: Political violence targeting women in West Africa - NO. 34, June 2022

Burkina Faso
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Women around the world are facing unprecedented levels of targeted political violence. This is also true in West Africa. Women can be targeted in a myriad of ways, by an array of types of perpetrators, during and outside of periods of conflict and contentious crises. The result though is consistent: such targeted violence has worrying implications for women’s political participation as well as their involvement in the public sphere. Political violence targeting women (PVTW) in West Africa has become increasingly common, with this trend increasing even more dramatically in recent years. The threat and risks, however, have not been uniform: different types of violence and different primary perpetrators dominate the gendered violence landscape across countries. Using data from ACLED, this paper tracks how women are targeted, and who is targeting women. Only by understanding how threats and risks that women face differ across countries can strategies be created to protect women.