April 1st, 2022
“The Municipality of Gjakova is one of the municipalities with the highest number of cases of domestic violence in Kosovo” was noted in the meeting organized by the Kosovar Centre for Security Studies (KCSS) with the community of women and local institutions in Gjakova.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, in Gjakova there was a significant increase in cases of domestic violence according to representatives of the Kosovo Police and the Municipality of Gjakova. While in 2020 in Gjakova 144 cases of domestic violence were reported to the police, in 2021 there were 157 reported cases. The police, as the main institution where cases of domestic violence are reported, considered the increase of cases as worrying, although they emphasized that the reporting of cases proves that women in Gjakova region are informed to not hide such cases when they occur. This high number of reported cases is also an indicator that citizens believe in the work of the Kosovo Police in dealing with cases of domestic violence, especially violence against women.
The community of women present at this meeting positively assessed the work of the police in combating violence against women in Gjakova, while among the main causes of domestic violence is the patriarchal mentality in Kosovo and the rejection by men that women should enjoy financial independence in all areas, in others terms the rejection of their emancipation in society. On the other hand, representatives of the Basic Court of Gjakova emphasized that first domestic violence cases are initiated by the police, and then heard in court, while all victims are treated properly due to the sensitive emotional state as a result of violence against them. It was noted that in the court, the victims are always accompanied by the victims protector office.
The leaders of the Municipality of Gjakova stated that violence against women begins when women begin to claim their rights in order to emancipate themselves in society to challenge, as they mentioned, the centuries-old domination of men. The meeting also discussed how central and local level institutions can not fight domestic violence alone without the role of other actors, such as non-governmental organisations to advocate against forms of domestic violence and women.
KCSS, through this project, will organize meetings in all municipalities of Kosovo to raise awareness against violence against women in Kosovo and the greater integration of women in Kosovo society.
This activity is supported by Kosovar Civil Society Foundation (KCSF) program ‘EJA Kosovo’, cofinanced by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Sweden, and Government of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.