Emma Watson and Keira Knightley call on world leaders to do more for women


Emma Watson, Keira Knightley, and Emma Thompson have marked International Women’s Day (08Mar19) by demanding world leaders do more to promote gender equality.

The trio are joined by fellow stars Andrea Riseborough, Carey Mulligan, Ruth Negga, Sienna Miller, as well as singers Dua Lipa, Annie Lennox, and Paloma Faith, and many other prominent women in signing a letter published in The Guardian on Friday.

Their missive demands politicians around the world fulfil commitments to improve gender equality and consult women on how to stop violence, abuse, and the marginalisation of those who speak out on feminist issues.

“On International Women’s Day 2019, it’s an astonishing fact that in no country in the world do women enjoy the same rights or opportunities as men,” their letter began. “Every day, women and girls face discrimination, poverty, and violence just because they are women.”

After highlighting statistics relating to the lack of representation of women in politics, unequal pay, and how one in three women experience violence in their lifetime, the letter goes on to demand more is done to make the world more equal.

“Governments worldwide must do more to protect women who stand up for their rights,” they added. “We call on them to recognise and trust the expertise of women’s rights organisations and women’s movements, in particular, those representing marginalised women; to counter the silencing of women’s rights activists; and to fulfil commitments to protect women human rights defenders by bringing to justice those who perpetrate violence, and strengthening the law in line with international human rights frameworks.”

International Women’s Day is celebrated around the world on Friday, with the letter one of several initiatives designed to get people talking about the battle for female equality.

Other signatories include model/activist Adwoa Aboah, MOBO Awards founder Kanya King, and other actors, including Gillian Anderson, Hayley Atwell, Rebecca Hall, and Felicity Jones.