Press releases, 24.11.2020

On 25 November, International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, the Parliament Building will be lit up in orange, the colour chosen to symbolise the day. Combating violence against women is a priority for Switzerland, both at national and international level. A further aim of this initiative is to highlight the authorities’ practice of zero tolerance towards violence against women, particularly during the pandemic.

Domestic violence and violence against women are huge problems throughout the world, including in Switzerland. In 2019, the police recorded almost 20,000 cases of domestic violence in this country, and nearly two thirds of homicides took place in a domestic setting, the vast majority of the victims being women.

In order to raise public awareness of this scourge and to show solidarity for the victims of violence against women, the Swiss government will light up the Parliament Building in orange on the evening of 25 November. This forms part of an action taking place around the globe. Public buildings throughout Switzerland - in Basel, Bern, Chur, Geneva, Lausanne and Zurich - will be illuminated in the same way, and the embassies of Belgium, Canada, Spain, Israel, Slovakia and Sweden, plus the Delegation of the European Union building, will also be bathed in orange. Switzerland's participation in this global initiative sends a clear signal: women's rights remain a priority at all times.

25 November also marks the beginning of the annual campaign 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, ending on International Human Rights Day on 10 December. Originally launched in 1991, the UN-supported campaign aims to raise awareness among the public and politicians about gender-based violence at local, national and international level. The global theme for 2020 is ‘Orange the World: Fund, Respond, Prevent, Collect!'. This year's campaign will also contribute to implementing the fifth sustainable development goal in the UN's 2030 Agenda, and forms part of the activities to mark the 25th anniversary of the Fourth World Conference on Women, held in Beijing in 1995. The Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action adopted at the conference are the most comprehensive instruments in promoting gender equality and strengthening the rights of women and girls.

The Parliament Building will be lit up from 5pm.

Address for enquiries:

Federal Department of Foreign Affairs FDHA
FDFA Communications, Tel. +41 58 462 31 53,

Federal Office for Gender Equality FOGE,
Hanna Jordi, Communication Officer, Tel. +41 58 484 98 18,


Federal Department of Home Affairs
Federal Department of Foreign Affairs

Last update 19.07.2023

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FDFA Communication

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