Tajikistan's Domestic Abuse Problem
Efforts are being stepped up to combat violence against women in Tajikistan, with the country’s parliament expected to pass new legislation by the end of this year.
Tajikistan has 21 crisis centres and offices offering support to domestic abuse victims. Now it also has special units attached to six hospitals around the country, which will offer advice and emergency accommodation.
Diana Ismailova, a top gender expert with the United Nations Population Fund in Tajikistan, says such reactive measures are all very well, but more needs to be done to prevent violence in the home.
When women marry in Tajikistan, they usually move into the groom’s home. Experts say those at risk of violence at the hands of husbands and in-laws are typically young, uneducated and from rural areas.
It is not regarded as socially acceptable for neighbours or others to make inquiries if there seems to be trouble in the home, and police frequently ignore cases that are reported to them.
Zarina Ergasheva is an IWPR-trained radio reporter in Tajikistan.
The audio programme, in Tajik and Russian, went out on national radio stations in Tajikistan, as part of IWPR project work funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.