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Nicole Kidman has urged world leaders and ordinary people to join the global fight to end violence against women.

The actress, seven months pregnant and passionately committed to her role as a goodwill ambassador for the U.N. Development Fund for Women, said Tuesday the violence was probably the "most widespread human rights violation of our time."

"One in three women will encounter violence in some way, shape or form against them in their lifetime," Kidman told a news conference at U.N. headquarters. "That's an extraordinary statistic. Yet do we ever hear it?"

The 40-year-old Australian star became a goodwill ambassador in January 2006 for the U.N. Development Fund for Women, known as UNIFEM.