The Advocates for Human Rights submitted a stakeholder report on domestic violence in Belarus to the 36th Session of the Working Group on the Universal Periodic Review in May 2020. Domestic violence remains a widespread problem in Belarus. In 2018, it was reported that “every third person killed in the country was killed by a family member.” Between January and October 2018, 115 women were victims of severe domestic violence, and 51 died from the abuse. In 2014, a broad definition of domestic violence was added to The Belarus Law on the Basics of Activities for the Prevention of Offences, yet implementation remains a problem.
Belarus accepted all 12 recommendations concerning gender equality and domestic violence at the last UPR Review in 2015, but there remain flaws in the implementation of these recommendations. For instance, there is a critical lack of shelters for survivors and the government has yet to pass concrete legislation that provides stronger measures of protection.
The report includes recommendations to amend and strengthen laws for victims and to improve the infrastructure available to survivors of domestic violence so they can find the help they need from state-run services or NGOs.
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