Montenegro: Domestic Violence Remains “Pervasive Problem” Despite 2010 Legal Reforms, Advocates Report

The Advocates for Human Rights, along with two Montenegrin NGOs, recently submitted a joint stakeholder report to the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) for the Universal Periodic Review of Montenegro. The report states that, although the country’s 2010 Law on Domestic Violence Prevention was a “crucial first step” towards preventing domestic violence in Montenegro, violence against women remains a “pervasive problem” there. One in three Montenegrin women have suffered domestic abuse in their lifetime and most women don’t feel safe reporting domestic violence due to a distrust of the institutions tasked with ending the epidemic. The report finds that the state often fails to hold perpetrators accountable for their actions and that law enforcement and others are insensitive to victims’ needs due to a lack of knowledge about the dynamics of domestic violence. The report ends with several recommendations, including requiring domestic violence training for system actors and prioritizing victim safety in Montenegrin law and policy.

The HRC will review Montenegro’s human rights situation and provide recommendations to the country in January of 2018.

Compiled from: MONTENEGRO: Domestic Violence, The Advocates for Human Rights, SOS Hotline for Women and Children Victims of Violence-Niksic, and Women’s Rights Center (June, 2017).