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UK £1bn aid boost for women

The UK is to pledge more than £1 billion to help family planning and contraception in the developing world in a summit organised by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

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'Inequality' prevents women using contraceptives

Charities say the availability of services does not ensure women will actually use them. In the DRC many women experience gender violence. Credit: United Nations

ActionAid has welcomed the Government's commitment to working with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to increase access to family planning for women across the world, but warned that many women are prevented from using existing services due to pressures from their husbands and communities.

Rowen Harvey from ActionAid said the Summit must focus on why women are "blocked" from using contraceptives:

"As long as women need permission from their husbands or are facing violence then these great efforts will not be sufficient.

The Summit must take practical steps to ensure women are always able to control when or whether they become pregnant. This means committing new resources for the measures that are proven to work in tackling violence and promoting equality between men and women.”

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