Azerbaijan has adopted a new domestic violence law. Jamila Seftaoui, the Senior Adviser on Gender Issues for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe(OSCE), celebrated the adoption of the law as an important step to prevention of domestic violence in Azerbaijan. At the same time, Seftaoui called for the development of effective mechanisms to provide for the law’s implementation. Seftaoui noted that, "A comprehensive approach to combating violence against women and an effective implementation of this law are essential to ensuring fundamental rights and security for women."
Prior to the new law, Azerbaijan’s legal system considered physical abuse a crime, but lacked a more specific code to address domestic violence. Experts argued that the status of the law was insufficient to protect victims of domestic violence.
The new law is intended to ameliorate the negative legal, medical, and social consequences that result from domestic violence. One of the early goals of legislation efforts was to set up shelters for women to help deal with the issue, particularly important in light of the economic dependence of many victims on their abuser.
Compiled from: OSCE Adviser Calls For Effective Implementation of Azerbaijan's Domestic Violence Law, New Law to Tackle Domestic Assault in Azerbaijan, (14 October 2010).