''Breaking the silence – united against domestic violence''
Domestic violence is shrouded in secrecy. Its victims rarely
reveal the fear, isolation and trauma in which they live. The
perpetrators deny it takes place at all. It is as if it does not
Domestic violence has long been met with public and political
silence. It is barely visible in the legal system and seldom
recognised as a serious crime and violation of fundamental human
The scene of domestic violence is behind closed doors. It mostly
involves intimate partners and former partners, and also takes
place within same sex relationships. The victims of domestic
violence are usually, but not exclusively, women. Men can be
affected as well as children who are often both witnesses of
violence between adults and victims of such violence. The
increase in inter-generational violence is also becoming a
matter of concern in our societies.
The Ministers of Justice will discuss ways to combat domestic
violence by identifying the problems and developing and
promoting a common approach to breaking the silence, and
supporting and empowering the victims.
The 29th Council of Europe Conference of Ministers of Justice
will open a forum for exchange of views on these issues and
identify areas where further efforts are needed to tackle this
problem in Europe.