Russia’s Police Tolerate Domestic Violence. Where Can Its Victims Turn?

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Russia’s Police Tolerate Domestic Violence. Where Can Its Victims Turn?

MOSCOW — she was beaten by him. He kidnapped her. He threatened to destroy her.

But it was Russia, where violence that is domestic both endemic and commonly ignored. Each and every time Valeriya Volodina visited law enforcement for defense against her ex-boyfriend, she got nowhere. “Not when did they start a unlawful situation against him — they might not acknowledge there clearly was an instance, ” she claims.

Therefore Ms. Volodina switched her places from the nation, and also this week, the Court that is european of Rights in Strasbourg ruled emphatically inside her benefit. Rejecting arguments from Russia that she had experienced no real damage, and that she had did not register her complaints correctly, the court awarded her 20,000 euros, about $22,500.

The ruling had been the European court’s first for a domestic physical violence instance from Russia — however it could be not even close to its final. Ten more Russian ladies have actually similar situations pending ahead of the court.

Ms. Volodina’s attorney, Vanessa Kogan, the manager of Astreya, a Russian peoples legal rights organization, hailed the ruling in Strasbourg “as a step that is crucial tackling the scourge of domestic physical violence in Russia. ”

Especially crucial, she stated, is that the European court recognized that “Russia’s failure to cope with this real question is systemic and that Russia authorities, by staying passive, by perhaps maybe maybe not providing security and also by without having necessary legislation, are violating victims’ equal rights ahead of the legislation. ”

The ruling Tuesday cast a harsh light in the Russian judicial and police systems, and their longstanding blind spot with regards to violence that is domestic. A written report this past year by Human Rights Watch described the problem as “pervasive” in Russia but seldom addressed as a result of legal hurdles, social stigma and an over-all unwillingness for legal reasons enforcement officers to go on it seriously.