Women again on the streets of Bosnia and Herzegovina. cities in protest against femicide

“Women are 50 percent of society, 100 percent have the right to seek protection from the system they finance,” said Aida Feraget, one of the women gathered in Sarajevo.

The murders of two women in Bosnia and Herzegovina in ten days, the beating of a female worker and other crimes are the reason why women from Sarajevo, Banja Luka and other cities united and, through peaceful gatherings, called on the authorities to make systematic changes, i.e. to criminalize the most extreme form of violence against women as a special criminal offense in BiH and punish the perpetrators more severely, ensuring prevention and protection for victims, but also sent a message to the rest of society to report violence and thereby fulfill their civic duty.

Blocked traffic

At exactly 4 p.m., traffic on Skenderija in Sarajevo was blocked by several dozen women carrying placards with the words “Stop femicide” or “My body, my rules, my life”, and handing out the “Proclamation of the United Women of BiH” to the crowd. In it, they say, femicide must be prescribed as a criminal offense, but it is also necessary to establish an independent body to combat femicide, direct money for safe and continuous financing of safe houses, centers for social work and self-empowerment of victims. The proclamation also requires an assessment of the risk of femicide in every report of domestic violence, as well as the quality of investigations, and the establishment of a prevention system through the education system.

“Women are 50 percent of society, 100 percent have the right to seek protection from the system they finance,” said Aida Feraget, one of the women gathered in Sarajevo. Murders of women committed by men are increasingly being prosecuted as hate crimes around the world, but in Bosnia and Herzegovina this is still not the practice, as Detektor has written about before. Last year too, after several murders, protests were held in BiH, and this year it was done after Nermin Sulejmanović killed Nizama Hećimović and two other people and wounded three others on August 11. The killer committed suicide. Yesterday, August 20, a man killed his wife and then himself.

Beating the female worker

The gathered women also pointed to the case of the beating of a hotel worker in Jablanica, as well as other cases of violence and murder. “No violence!”, “State protect us!”, “I can or I won’t!” – these are just some of the messages that women carried in their hands today while walking the streets of Banja Luka as a sign of protest against the killing of women in Bosnia and Herzegovina. In the organization “United Women” from Banjaluka, they note that there must be solidarity after everything that happened in the last few days, but also that through the protest walk they want to point out everything that happened before the arrest of the woman. “These are usually reports of violence, long-term violence, and we want to point out the need, obligation and responsibility of institutions to respond to reports of violence, to provide help and protection to women and, above all, to believe them when they report violence,” said Gorica Ivić. from the “United Women” organization.

According to “United Women” data, seventy women have been killed in BiH in the last ten years. According to the same data in Republika Srpska, more and more women are reporting domestic violence, but this, in Ivić’s opinion, does not necessarily mean that there is more violence than before, but that women have become more emboldened and are reporting it more. The problem is when their applications remain unresponsive. “United Women” note that the existing law in Republika Srpska is good, but that they insist that femicide be recognized as a separate criminal offense. “What I believe as a lawyer is that it would be realistic to expect that femicide be qualified as a crime of aggravated murder and that a stricter prison sentence be prescribed,” said Aleksandra Petrić from “Uduženih žene”.

Respectable members of society known as thugs

Journalist Milkica Milojević believes that all citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina bear a large part of the blame because they do not report violence, even though it is both a legal and moral obligation of every individual. She also says that in Bosnia and Herzegovina, it is not rare that there are individuals who are well-known members of the society and that “that obviously does not bother anyone”.

“When did any of us get up and leave a party, a wedding or any social gathering if there was someone there who was recognized as someone who beat his wife? Who ever said, ‘I’m sorry, but I don’t want to be here with such a man,'” asks the journalist and activist from Banja Luka. Women who were walking in several cities in Bosnia and Herzegovina today sent a message to the institutions that no more women should get hurt, but also to distance themselves from protests organized by representatives of the authorities, reports Detektor.

Source: blesak.info