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65% of Women Murdered in Russia Killed By Partners or Relatives – Study

The share of women murdered at the hands of loved ones in Russia is well above the global average, the study said. Atul Saini / pexels

Over two-thirds of women killed in Russia in the past decade were murdered by their partners or relatives, according to a study by the Russian Consortium of Women's Non-Governmental Organizations.

Of the over 18,000 women killed in Russia between 2011 and 2019, 9,868 were killed by their partners, accounting for 53% of all publicly available murder sentences — the highest figure in the world, the study published Wednesday said. In comparison, the share of women killed by their partners is 29% in Europe, 38% in Africa 38% and 42% in Oceania.

Another 2,341 women in Russia, or 13% of women killed, died at the hands of family members.

The 65.8% rate of murders at the hands of loved ones is well above the global average and places Russia among countries like Iran, Yemen, Liberia and the United Arab Emiates, the study said.   

“Our research confirms the hypothesis that the most dangerous place for a woman in Russia is at home,” the study’s authors, which also include lawyers and other specialists working to prevent domestic violence, said.

The study’s authors urged called on the Russian authorities to strengthen anti-domestic violence legislation and to increase protections for domestic violence victims.

Russia in 2017 decriminalized first-time domestic violence offenses, a move that activists say emboldens abusers and fosters a culture of impunity.

The country’s Constitutional Court in April ordered stronger laws to punish repeat domestic violence offenders, saying both the penalties for abusers as well as protections for victims were insufficient.

But critics and activists argue that the court ruling is not enough to help stem domestic violence in Russia.

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