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Austria sees curious surge in 'femicide': 319 cases in 10 years.

Austria sees curious surge in femicide: 319 cases in 10 years.

Vienna: Thirty-one women were brutally killed last year in Austria by their partners or ex-partners as the country has been witnessing an increasing number of femicide through the past years, Agence France- Presse reported.

A government-commissioned study reported last year that between 2010 and 2020, 319 women lost their lives brutally. 2019 recorded the highest with 43 deaths. Austria was among the three European Union nations with leading numbers of femicide committed by a family member or relative in 2018. For a comparatively small and wealthy country, Austria rarely witnesses gruesome crimes, but the mounting cases of women killed have gathered wider public attention as well as stirred rights activists and politicians.

November last year, a woman died of beating with a baseball bat. In March, another was beaten and strangled with a wire by her ex-partner and later poured over with gasoline and got set on fire. Though rescued, she succumbed to severe injuries. Even, few days into 2022, a woman was shot by her husband to death over their dinner table. The list of incidents goes similarly while an activist told AFP that condemns that there is not enough outrage regarding these incidents.

A woman, a victim of an abusive marriage, told AFP about how isolated she felt. She said that the existence of strong social stigma and shame give fewer people for talking or sharing feelings. She said that after she moved into her new house, she used to lock herself inside with her son whenever her ex-husband came by. She added that the abuses were never seen as crimes until they became murder.

A criminologist, Isabel Haider, said it is essential to train law enforcement authorities in responding to women in crisis more sensitively. Many had told her that police were not taking them seriously.

However, the Austrian administration allotted 28 million dollars to finance initiatives against this serious matter.

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