Lebanese Protest Inaction to Curb Violence against Women

A seemingly endless spate of violent deaths of women with no apparent official response has sent Lebanese civilians into the streets to protest in front of the parliament. Since December there have been eight such deaths, including a woman employed by the British embassy who was strangled by a cab driver while trying to rape her; and a woman shot to death by her husband last week. Also cited was a suicide by a young woman because of a forced early marriage. Protesters seek to toughen laws that were enacted after a similar outbreak of fatal incidents in 2014 that for the first time made conjugal violence a crime but apparently failed to consider making it more likely that offenders will ever face arrest and trial. Activist organizations issued a statement admonishing that, “Women are dying one after the other because of inaction by the legislative, executive and judicial powers that don’t consider this to be a priority issue.”

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