“Women’s lives still being cut short by lovers” – NGOs

36 local NGOs said that even though the Istanbul Convention was implemented in Maltese Laws, women are still being murdered by those who claim to love them.

This press release was sent following last week’s murder of Lordes Aguis, mother of six. The NGOs pointed out the fact that this was the fourth femicide this year in Malta, while they mentioned the fact that as from the year 2000, three out of every four femicide victims were murdered by their partners or husbands, ex-partners or husbands or close family members.

The organisations insisted these happened because the authorities, which are meant to protect these women, especially victims of domestic violence, are not ensuring their security and protection. They insisted that living free from domestic violence is a fundamental human right and that it is the state’s responsibility to ensure that this is respected by all citizens. They remarked that many victims have sought help and justice, but did not find it.

These organisations made a number of requests to the government. These cases are not solved privately and such crimes affect the society as a whole, they said.

The organisations claimed that all police should be trained to recognise cases of domestic violence, and to understand the necessary procedures which should be followed in such cases. In their press release, they emphasised the importance of following the Gender based Violence and Domestic Violence Act. The organisations emphasised the importance of Governmental Departments, Agencies, and Ministries working together for the security of victims, before it is too late.

They also insisted that Maltese Courts should follow all cases of domestic violence up until these are solved, even if the victims are being threatened against speaking out.

The organisations which signed this press release are: St Jeanne Antide Foundation, aditus foundation, Platform of Human Rights Organisations in Malta (PHROM), Women’s Rights Foundation, Merħba Bik, Department Gender Studies (Faculty of Social Wellbeing, University of Malta), The Critical Institute, SOS Malta, Allied Rainbow Communities (arc), Richmond Foundation, YMCA, African Media Association Malta, Association for Equality (A4E), Malta Confederation of Women’s Organisations (MCWO), Kummissjoni Ejjew Għandi, Dean’s Office (Faculty of Social Wellbeing, University of Malta), Men Against Violence, Attard Ladies Cultural Club (ALCC), Malta Association of Women in Business (MAWB), MGRM, We Are, Group of Independent MCWO Members (GIMM), Women’s Study Group (WSG), Malta Union of Midwives and Nurses (MUMN), JRS, Drachma LGBTI, Drachma Parents’ Group, Integra Foundation, SPARK, Department for inclusion and Access to Learning (Faculty of Education, University of Malta), Solidarity with Migrants Group, OASI Foundation, Social Assistance Secretariat of Malta Catholic Action, Victim Support Malta, Dar tal-Providenza, Paolo Freire Institute.