With gender-based discrimination still widespread around the world, the International Women's Day campaigns to promote and protect women's equal rights - as a fundamental human right.
Over the years, action for the advancement of women has taken four clear directions: (1) promotion of legal measures; (2) mobilization of public opinion and international action; (3) training and research, including the compilation of gender desegregated statistics; and (4) direct assistance to disadvantaged groups. A central organizing principle is that no enduring solution to society's most threatening social, economic and political problems can be found without the full participation, and the full empowerment, of the world's women.
"Women and HIV/AIDS" is this year's theme for International Women's Day 2004.
8 March is also the United Nations Day for Women's Rights and International Peace