Domestic Violence Soaring in Crisis-Wracked Greece

(Photo by Eurokinissi/Stelios Misinas, FILE)

ATHENS – With a nearly eight-year-long economic crisis already crushing Greece with record unemployment, poverty, suicide and deprivation, the number of domestic cases grew from 2014-17, with more than 13,700 cases reported.

That has increased during the reign of the ruling Radical Left SYRIZA-led coalition which took office in January, 2015 with the promise to reverse austerity measures demaned by international lenders before adding more after Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras broke his word to protect workers, pensioners and the poor and to “Crush the Oligarchy,” but didn’t.

Last year there were 3,134 cases of domestic violence reported in Greece involving 4,243 victims, Greek Police (ELAS) spokeswoman Ioanna Rotziokou told the Athens-Macedonian news agency. “Women account for 70 percent of the victims,” she said.

Violence was verbal, physical or sexual, and was occasionally fatal. “Sometimes the tragic outcome of these domestic situations is even death, with the number of female fatalities twice that of men,” she said.

In 2013, under a different government, a study conducted by the General Secretariat for Gender Equality showed a 47% increase in cases of domestic violence against women in Greece.

At the opening ceremony of the new Women’s Support and Consultation Center in Kavala, Vaso Kollia the then-General Secretary for  Gender Equality said domestic violence can come in different forms, for example financial blackmail, sexual humiliation, injuries or even rape. She said: “Violence against women is present and undeniable,” and continues.