Thailand, Indochina explore ways to tackle domestic violence.
Parliamentarians, lawyers and local nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) from Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam began a three-day workshop Tuesday in Phnom Penh to explore ways of drafting domestic violence laws in each country.
The participants will draft a sample for new legislation that could be used as a blueprint for each government, the Bangkok-based Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (Forum-Asia) said in a statement.
The statement noted that none of the four countries has enacted any specific law addressing the problem of domestic violence even though the problem has grown significantly, with recent studies showing that almost 50% of women in Thailand have been physically or sexually abused.
''This relegation of domestic violence to the private sphere as well as gender biases in legal systems, social and cultural attitudes create an often insurmountable barrier for women seeking legal redress in domestic violence cases,'' it said.
The workshop, is also being jointly organized by Forum-Asia, the Asia-Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development and Cambodia's Ministry of Women and Veterans' Affairs.