MOJ to ECHR: men suffer more from discrimination in domestic violence cases

Men suffer more discrimination in cases of domestic violence – Ministry of Justice replied to ECHR


The Russian Ministry of Justice stated the above in an official letter to the ECHR, alongside addressing the issue of female victims of domestic violence. The ministry believes that men are more likely to suffer discrimination in domestic violence cases.


In the summer of 2019, the ECHR interrogated the Russian Federation about the cases of four women, who had said that the government had not protected them from domestic violence. A copy of the letter was reviewed by the Kommersant newspaper.


The letter was signed by Deputy Minister of Justice Mikhail Halperin. In the letter, the government acknowledged that ‘the phenomenon of domestic violence unfortunately exists in Russia as in any other country’, but that ‘the magnitude and seriousness of the problem and the extent of its effect on women in Russia, are exaggerated’.


The ministry refers to statistics that show that men are the majority of victims of violent crimes that have led to death or serious health consequences.


‘Even if we assume that most of the victims of domestic violence in Russia are actually women (although there is no evidence for this claim), it is logical to assume that male victims are more likely to suffer discrimination in such cases. They are in the minority, and they are no expected to suffer from ill-treatment from family members, especially if they are suffering at the hands of the opposite sex’, writes the Ministry of Justice to the ECHR.


The Ministry of Justice suggested that the women who appealed to the ECHR are attempting to ‘misrepresent domestic violence in Russia’ and ‘undermine the legal mechanisms that already exist in Russia, as well as the government’s attempts to improve the situation.’ The ministry of justice said that ‘the Russian state has fully complied with the need to create a legislative framework that addresses the problem of domestic violence’.


In Russia, a special law is being developed to prevent domestic violence, which introduces the concept of ‘harassment’. The Domestic Violence Bill will give victims the right to rehabilitation and a protection order from the aggressor. Attackers will also be sent to anger management training.


The centre reports that in 95% of cases of domestic violence, it is women who die at the hands of their husbands.