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Hundreds march through London to call for end of male violence against women

Hundreds of people marched through London on Saturday in a call to end male violence against women and girls.

Chanters walked from Charing Cross police station to Scotland Yard to highlight the harming of women by police.

Those marching on Saturday were supporters of the Million Women Rise collective, an organisation led by “black women for all women”.

Supporters carried signs that read: “Women’s rights are human rights”, “Girls just wanna have equal rights” and “The future is female”.

​​Many wore red, which they said symbolised the blood of women who have died at the hands of men.

The marchers demanded a clear dialogue from police on tackling the issues.

They pointed to the rape and murder of Sarah Everard by a Metropolitan Police officer and the sharing of photographs of two murdered sisters, Nicole Smallman and Bibaa Henry, as evidence of why action is needed.

The Million Women Rise march started outside Charing Cross Police Station


Marketing executive Everard was abducted, raped and killed by serving Metropolitan Police officer, Wayne Couzens on 3 March last year.

Couzens was given a whole life sentence in September last year.

In December, two Metropolitan Police officers were sentenced to two years and nine months in prison for sharing photos of murdered sisters, Smallman and Henry, who were found stabbed to death in June 2020.

The Old Bailey in London heard that Deniz Jaffer, 47, and Jamie Lewis, 33 took photos of the scene, including some of the bodies, and shared them in two WhatsApp groups calling the victims “dead birds”.

Hundreds took part in the Million Women Rise march


Million Women Rise spokeswoman Sabrina Qureshi said: “Violence against women is widespread in our society, yet none of our political leaders are willing to truly take this on.

“We need change. From the disproportionate number of police officers who are offenders against women, to the clear back-slapping culture of hate, evidenced from the locker room to social media.

“Enough. We demand accountability. We demand a total overhaul and rethink of what and who the police are for.”

In a video message played to the crowd, Mina Smallman, the mother of the two murdered sisters, said: “It’s not on us to ensure our own safety, it’s up to the government legislation to ensure that we are kept safe and that we are believed when we come forward to say we have been attacked.”

Additional reporting by PA.

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