There has been an increase in reports of domestic violence in Suriname's rural
areas and particularly in the districts of Nickerie and Commewijne; without
mentioning exact figures the police and Justice Minister Edward Belfort say that in Commewijne 'daily' cases of domestic violence are reported.
Nickerie has reports over 100 cases in the first half of 2012.
Belfort said that women are not the only the victims of domestic abuse and that
men and children are also being hurt. Many cases are related to the low social
conditions as well as to drug and alcohol abuse. The government plans to
establish shelters and professional help for the victims, who currently can
refuge with relatives and friends because there are no professional facilities
It should be noted that, in the last few years, sexual and domestic violence
have been more focused on by the Surinamese authorities. One of the results has
been that the taboo on the issues is broken. The increasing number of reports
not necessarily mean that the number of incidents has also increased. The
number can be ascribed to the lowered threshold for the victims to report such
incidents to the police.
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