Sofia Echo


Every fourth woman in Bulgaria is a victim of domestic violence – report

Author: The Sofia Echo Staff Date: Sat, Mar 06 2010 15 Comments, 5473 Views
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Every fourth woman in Bulgaria is a victim of domestic violence, Bulgarian National Television (BNT) said on March 6 2010, two days ahead of International Women’s Day.
Most cases are caused by men seeking to exercise power over their spouses, with other causal factors including lack of money, alcohol, and childhood psychological trauma, according to research cited in a news agency report quoted by BNT.
Stanimira Hadzhimitrova, co-founder of director of the Gender Project in Bulgaria said that violence existed in many forms and was widespread.
Statistics were imprecise because many victims were ashamed or feared retribution while others had the support of friends and relatives.
According to research done by the Gender Project in 2000, in 92 per cent of cases, the perpetrators of domestic violence physical assaults were men. Women were "masters" of psychological and mental abuse that was no less frightening, Hadzhimitrova was quoted as saying.
Forcing someone into prostitution should also be seen as a form of violence and there should be extensive discussion of this issue before there was any decision on regularising sex work, she said.
She called for civic education in schools on the topic of domestic violence.
BNT quoted research showing that it was untrue to claim that domestic violence was limited to less educated and poorer sections of Bulgarian society; it existed at all strata.
There were few convictions because current law failed to provide rapid and effective protection for victims, and prosecutors still tended to regard abuse in the home as a family problem and not as a criminal offence. Further, it was a taboo to discuss domestic violence.

Meanwhile, the European Parliament has launched a special webpage dedicated to International Women's Day 2010.

"Through the whole month of March this page will bring you coverage of EP events dealing with this year's theme: ending violence against women. MEPs, national MPs, special guests, experts and the public will contribute to the debate in meetings, events and even via Facebook, with ideas on how to prevent violence and help victims. The theme of the campaign - all documents, interviews, photos and video - will always be the same: We can stop it!" the webpage says.

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    • Anonymous
      Sue Barnett Rating:
      #15 15, 34, Sun, Apr 10 2011

      I'm single and English, and for 16 months I have been a victim of both of these kinds of abuse myself, from men and women. It is incapacitating and terrifying.

      Failing to deal with this should not be put down to a national trait, 'it is just the Bulgarian way'. If we excuse everything that way no one will accept the responsibility or urgency of dealing with it. Tell those who should deal with it that it is just a national trait and they will cozily hide behind that as long as they are allowed.

    • AnonymousbbSun, Mar 14 2010

      This comment has been removed by the moderator because it contained

    • Anonymous
      Job van de Pol Rating:
      #13 17, 16, Wed, Mar 10 2010

      Love is patient, love is kind.
      It does not envy, it does not boast,
      it is not proud. It is not rude,
      it is not self seeking, it is not easily angered,
      it keeps no record of wrongs.
      Love does not delight in evil
      but rejoices with the truth.
      It always protects, always trusts, always hopes
      always perseveres.
      And now these three remain: faith, hope and love.
      But the greatest of these is love.

      If you [...]

      Read the full comment do not think the same stay away from my zlatki fiancé and all our families because you deserve to be punished in the hardest way thinkable

    • Anonymous neutral
      #12 15, 47, Wed, Mar 10 2010

      please search on or "why most converts islam in europe are Women"

    • AnonymousValeriTue, Mar 09 2010

      This comment has been removed by the moderator because it contained

    • Anonymous
      Valeri Rating:
      #10 18, 22, Tue, Mar 09 2010

      there was a study that just came out that up to 1/3 of women in the US military end up being raped by their own "brothers in arms" and almost never there is any consequences for the perpetrators.
      That in the controlled military setting!

      I do love it when some random westerner like that Norman character exhibits their own racism by blanket statements like "it's the Bulgarian way" for every ill that plagues every other society as well...

    • Anonymous
      Ann Thomson Rating:
      #9 17, 59, Tue, Mar 09 2010

      It took decades for North America to get over the habit of covering up and ignoring this problem. The police themselves down-played the situations as they themselves were many times guilty of the same abuse in their own homes. This applies just as much in the military where the authorities believed also that the man's home was his castle and the women should just be obedient. Even now, abuse is not taken as seriously as it should be in some cases, but we have come many miles in the last 30 years.
      I hope the Bulgaria is not [...]

      Read the full comment expected to solve their abuse problems fast, when we were not able to here in our "progressive" countries.

    • Anonymous neutral
      #8 09, 22, Tue, Mar 09 2010

      i believe that violence against women is one of the least excusable crimes, the perpertrators of which should be harshly treated, and their actions made public.

      sad to say, however, but polititions here will simply behave in the usual way: they'll make all the right, supportive noises, then forget about it and get back to business as usual. it's the bulgarian way.

    • AnonymousMan with no nameMon, Mar 08 2010

      This comment has been removed by the moderator because it contained

      Anonymouswife basherMon, Mar 08 2010

      This comment has been removed by the moderator because it contained

    • Anonymous neutral
      #5 18, 18, Mon, Mar 08 2010

      The intentions are admirable, but the weak judiciary will have to step up to the plate if reform is to be delivered.

      As long as you can still get a few friends to go to court and lie on your behalf with little or no scrutiny or comeback - women will still be trampled on and NGOs will end up picking up the pieces.

    • Anonymous
      peter Rating:
      #4 17, 28, Mon, Mar 08 2010

      Better start changing few laws to protect women a little better. Anyone here realizes that having a cat is more expensive as getting some lady pregnant and pay child support? But probably nobody will care about any new laws as they already don't care about the old.

    • Anonymous
      Well done? Rating:
      #3 09, 20, Mon, Mar 08 2010

      Not bloody likely! There is no mention in this article about anyone addressing this problem.

    • Anonymous neutral
      #2 07, 38, Mon, Mar 08 2010

      I also hope that there will be specially trained police officers to deal with the victime of domestic abuse and violence as this is a specialist field and needs careful and sensitive handling. It is no good having the laws in place if women (or Men) are treated callously and with indifference by police who think the whole thing is a waste of time.
      I had this experience in an English police station in the 1960's and it is dreadful.
      So please train your police personnel and maybe follow up the UK example of having established [...]

      Read the full comment units to deal with alllaspects of ddomestic and child abuse.

    • Anonymous neutral
      #1 07, 31, Mon, Mar 08 2010

      Great is time for Bulgaria to deal with this problem in the modern way. Violence and assault are a crime either inside or outside the home and the nature of the relationship bewteen the victim and perpertrator is immaterial. Really good news Bulgaria, well done.

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