Subject: LUSA: Domestic Violence in Spotlight

06 Feb 02 20:27 East Timor: Domestic Violence in Spotlight

The United Nations civilian police in East Timor says there were 382 reported cases of domestic violence reported in the territory last year. This figure is believed to represent only 15 percent of such cases.

"Domestic violence is not a problem for the police alone. A a police service, we must recognize the devastating effect of domestic violence on our communities and we must take steps to address it", said Police Commissioner Peter Miller at a press conference in Dili on Wednesday.

Miller quoted Chief Minister Mari Alkatiri, who said last year that, "Domestic violence is on the increase and lots of people consider beating a wife a private matter not to be discussed publicly .... Our women and girls should enjoy freedom without violence".

Wednesday`s press conference was organized by the UN transition administration office of communication and public information as part of a national media campaign on domestic violence.

CJB -Lusa-

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