NICOSIA – Showing how difficult it is to slow, let alone stop, domestic violence and violence, Cyprus’s Ombudswoman Maria Stylianou Lottides noted government failures to adopt the Istanbul Convention and the murder of 20 women on the island in the last four years.
The advisory committee for the prevention and combating of violence in the family said there were nine femicides in 2019, five in 2020, another five the following year and one so far in 2022, The Cyprus Mail reported.
“Violence against women is the most blatant form of gender discrimination and inequality perpetrated within the gendered power relations between men and women,” a statement marking the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women said.
It added that femicide is “the result of chronic, systematic abuse of a woman which culminates in this heinous crime” with statistics showing it to be a pandemic that’s not being brought under control.
Deputy Minister of Social Welfare Anastasia Anthousi said setting up a women’s house in 2019 to protect them was a “breakthrough” for Cyprus and that it offers support to victims of domestic violence.
“Immediate action is needed by the state to ensure full compliance with the provisions of the Istanbul Convention,” Lottides noted while the paper reported that professionals in the field said there’s not enough training about how to combat domestic violence.
“The aim of professionals should be, through a victim-centred approach, to keep the victim within the system, to support and empower them step by step to enable them to free themselves from the perpetrator,” the advisory committee also added.