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Saudi Arabia's Efforts to End Violence Against Women.

11/25/2018 12:00:00 AM   |      |   

Saudi Arabia's Efforts to End Violence Against Women.

Saudi Arabia joins the world in marking the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on Nov. 25, and it has taken steady steps toward protecting them under the law.

Dr. Majid Al-Eissa, executive director of the National Family Safety Program, said that around 35 percent of women in Saudi Arabia have experienced at least one type of violence in their lifetime.

Our latest study pointed out that violence rates against women are close to 35 percent,” Al-Eissa told Arab News.

This number is in line with global figures without any significant difference, which means that the issue of violence against women exists everywhere around the world, and no society is immune.”

The latest project by the National Family Safety Program is a rehabilitation program for women who have been victims of violence, which will be rolled out throughout the Kingdom from next month.

The program, which is seven weeks long, aims to help them resume a normal life after the experience they have been through. “So far, 120 women have benefited from our rehabilitation program in Riyadh alone,” Al-Eissa said.

Bandar bin Mohammed Al-Aiban, chairman of the Saudi Human Rights Commission, said 1,059 cases of violence against women were reported to courts in 2017, of which 348 were cases of physical violence, 59 of domestic violence and 65 of sexual abuse.

A poll of more than 1,000 people by the Saudi National Center for Public Opinion Polls in November last year revealed that 16 percent of women believe that the prevalence of violence against women is high, 73 percent of respondents said husbands are the main abusers of women, and 83 percent of violence cases take place in the home, where women are most vulnerable.

Al-Eissa said the role of the National Family Safety Program is primarily based on preventive strategies, including awareness campaigns, forums, courses, seminars and workshops in partnership with various institutions, including universities and human rights organizations.

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