The National Network Against Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence reacts: 3 femicides in one month, responsibility for officials and the harshest punishment for the perpetrator

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The national network against violence against women and domestic violence on the occasion of the three femicides that occurred within a period of one month, the double murder of the two women in Kumanovo and the murder of the woman in Kočani sent a strong condemnation to the institutions that did not take the appropriate actions and their inaction contributed to three brutal murders of women:

- The failure to take appropriate measures by the competent institutions and the incorrect or lack of implementation of the laws leads to murder, that is, femicide as the most extreme form of violence against women, which is usually committed by a man, and the victim is always a woman. The analysis of the National Network showed that in the period from 2017 to 2020, a total of 22 femicides were registered in Macedonia. In most of the analyzed cases, the murder was committed by a current or former marital or extramarital partner with whom the victim lived in union. In more than 80% of cases, the murder took place either in the shared home or, if they were separated, in the home of the victim. The data from the OSCE research, published in 2019, is alarming, that women very rarely report the violence that precedes it, that is, only 2% of violent incidents are reported and it is usually the most serious that is reported. These findings are clear indicators of mistrust in institutions and general mistrust in the protection system. The non-punishment and/or inadequate punishment of perpetrators of violence sends a message that condones their violent behavior and encourages them to continue to commit violence, responds the National Network.

They ask the Basic Public Prosecutor's Office to classify the murder in Kočani in accordance with Article 123, paragraph 2a "another will take the life of a woman or a girl under 18 years of age, when committing gender-based violence", and when determining the amount of the sentence to take considering all the circumstances, i.e. not to treat the case as a one-time incident, but a murder as a consequence of long-term domestic violence.

-According to this, we demand the determination of the highest punishment for the perpetrator and we demand that a procedure be initiated to investigate the responsibility of the officials, in connection with the two cases, who did not act in a timely manner and whose unprofessional work led to the death of 3 women. After the procedure for determining responsibility, we expect the officials to be appropriately sanctioned, the National Network against Violence against Women and Domestic Violence announced.

From there, they emphasize that only by establishing a functional system of protection against violence against women and domestic violence, respecting the basic principle of the Istanbul Convention - Due Diligence in its true sense, and appropriately punishing the perpetrators can we prevent future cases of gender-based violence and femicide as its most extreme form. According to them, it is necessary for the judicial authorities to show greater awareness and understanding of the problem and this type of criminal acts, with the ultimate goal: proper qualification of the acts, appropriate treatment of the victims in the proceedings themselves, as well as a stricter punishment policy for the perpetrators.

The Platform for Gender Equality reacts: Another femicide due to inaction by the institutions

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