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 Post subject: Domestic Violence Against Women
 Post Posted: Thu Dec 01, 2005 1:12 am 
Domestic Violence Against Women

One in six women worldwide suffers domestic violence — some battered during pregnancy — yet many remain silent about the assaults, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO). In its first global study, the WHO also said physically or sexually-abused women were more likely to suffer longer-term health problems, including distress and suicide attempts. The United Nations agency called for changing behaviour through education programmes and training more health workers and police to investigate signs of mistreatment.

Domestic violence remains largely hidden

The Women’s Health and Domestic Violence Against Women study is based on interviews with more than 24,000 women in 10 countries, ranging from Japan and Thailand to Ethiopia and Peru. It paints a harrowing picture of broken bones, bruises, burns, cracked skulls, dislocated jaws, rape and fear. Husbands or intimate partners are the main perpetrators.

In many cases women agree that a man is justified in beating his wife under certain circumstances. According to one study coordinator, "Whether you are a cosmopolitan woman in Sao Paulo, Brazil or Japan, or a rural woman in Ethiopia or Peru, the association between violence and poor health remains." Other countries covered in the seven-year study, issued on the eve of the U.N.’s International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, included Samoa, Bangladesh, Namibia, Tanzania and Serbia and Montenegro. Between four and 12 percent of women who had been pregnant reported being beaten during pregnancy — more than 90 percent by the father of the unborn child, according to the report.

South Asia and Sri Lanka

However in South Asia, one in every two women face violence in their homes while in

Sri Lanka studies reveal 60% of women suffer from domestic violence according to a press release by Oxfam GB in Sri Lanka. Manik Gunatileke, a member of Oxfam Sri Lanka says that according to police bureaux in Sri Lanka, the amount of reported cases of domestic violence has doubled since 2003. "Our studies only show us the reported cases, of women who spoke out, but the number of unreported cases could be much higher."


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