Russian Women and Domestic Violence
Monday, March 21, 2005 12:15 PM

The government of the Russian Federation has adopted a national plan of action, a Gender Strategy plan and views violence against women as a “violation of human rights requiring the intervention of the state.” However, tolerance of domestic violence in the country continues to abound.

According to Women’s Enews, one in every four families in Russia is confronted with domestic violence, resulting in the death of about 14,000 women at the hands of their husbands or partners. In addition, women that live through domestic violence suffer through years of the abuse before they report it to the police if they report it all.

Despite its adoption of the preventative instruments above, the government of the Russian Federation has failed to act in response to such reports of abuse. According to Women’s Enews, for example, the Parliament failed to pass a bill on domestic violence last year. Further, in 2004, the Kremlin ended the Inter-governmental commission, which had been established to promote gender equality and women’s rights. According to a report issued by Amnesty International, the government rarely brings perpetrators of violence to justice because police refuse to intervene when violence occurs.

The lack of support in the country causes women to blame themselves for the violence or take matters into their own hands, allowing the cycle of violence to continue.

Compiled from: Russian Women Struggle to Survive Domestic Violence, Mariya Rasner, Women’s Enews, 10 March 2005.