UN chief mourns Indian gang-rape victim's death

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United Nations, Dec 30 (IANS) UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has expressed his "deep sorrow" at the death Saturday of an Indian woman at a Singapore hospital 13 days after being gang-raped by six men in a moving bus in Delhi.

Also Saturday night, UN Women, the main UN body dedicated to the protection of the rights of women and girls, mourned the death of the Indian gang-rape victim, Xinhua reported.

The incident has evoked widespread protests in different parts of the country, especially in the capital city of India, by largely young crowd seeking justice for the victim and safety of women in India.

"The secretary-general expresses deep sorrow at the death of the 23-year-old Delhi student who was gang-raped by six men in a moving bus in New Delhi on 16 December," according to a statement issued by Ban's spokesperson here Saturday night.

The secretary-general "offers his sincerest condolences to her parents, family and friends, and utterly condemns this brutal crime", it said. "Violence against women must never be accepted, never excused, never tolerated. Every girl and woman has the right to be respected, valued and protected."

Kelvin Loh, chief executive officer of the Mount Elizabeth Hospital, said the patient died at the hospital at 4.45 a.m. (local time) Saturday after suffering from severe organ failure.

"UN Women joins the UN secretary-general in mourning the death of a 23-year-old student gang raped by six men earlier this month in New Delhi, India," the UN agency said on its website.

"UN Women and other parts of the UN stand ready to support reform efforts to deter such crimes and bring the perpetrators to justice," it added.

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