State Fails to Protect Women and Children

Outraged by the recklessness of law enforcement authorities, concerned by the lack of interest for the lives of women and girls in our country, appalled by the ongoing gruesome killings of women and girls, the Kosovo Women’s Network (KWN) calls out the Kosovo society No More Killings of Women and Girls.

No more excuses for violence, no more tolerance for violence, no more setting free violent offenders, no more failures in delivering justice and protection for the citizens of Kosovo.

Last night we were informed of the most recent case of domestic violence with a tragic outcome, where a woman and a child were killed. According to media reports, the homicide occurred in Berkoc village, Municipality of Gjakova, where the perpetrator, after having initially threatened the victim – a 40-year old woman – by phone, went to her home where he killed her and her 9-year old daughter. The perpetrator is allegedly the spouse of the 40-year old victim.

According to KWN sources, the perpetrator was previously detained on remand (May 2018) on charges of domestic violence against the deceased, for the offense of “Light Bodily Injury”. Kosovo Police were aware of his criminal background, while the court released him after one month in detention on remand. According to the Criminal Code of the Republic of Kosovo, the minimum punishment provided for such a criminal offense is imprisonment of 3 months up to 5 years.

His release led to the murder of the woman and her daughter. At KWN, we believe that if the perpetrator had been previously convicted for the above offense, we would not be writing this release today, and a woman and her child would still be among the living. On the day of the murder, the victim had warned the police of the threats she had received from the person who is now alleged as the perpetrator, however as reported in the media, police failed to establish contact.

The time has come for us to respond to the murderers of women and girls. It is of paramount importance to bring the perpetrators to justice. It is of paramount importance to have the responsible institutions and persons in these institutions receive due punishment from the society. We call for moral punishment and legal punishment for the defenders of murderers, guardians of the patriarchal order, to whom the lives of women and girls are not worthwhile.