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No Domestic Violence in Russia, Suggests Children's Ombudsman

Russian children's rights ombudsman Pavel Astakhov spoke out Friday against using the term "domestic violence," arguing that it discredits the concept of the family.

"Constant and excessive use of the term 'domestic violence' serves to program, zombify and intimidate families and parents," Astakhov, a lawyer known for his conservative views, wrote on his Instagram account Friday.

"The family is the safest place! Far more crimes happen in public places, on transport and in stores. Let's protect and cherish the family unit!" Astakhov wrote, applying emphatic capitals to the word "family" in both places.

Statistics presented by the State Duma Committee on Public Health in 2012 showed that some 40 percent of all violent crimes in Russia were committed within families.

Astakhov added that he had given a resolution on protecting "traditional" family values and state non-interference with the family unit to Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev.

While data on domestic violence is scarce in Russia, an estimated 36,000 women suffer from domestic violence and abuse every day, Russian government newspaper Rossiiskaya Gazeta reported last year. Most acts of domestic abuse in Russia are not classified as such and often go unreported, according to a report by Human Rights Brief.

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