ITALY: Italy backs treaty against domestic violence

Summary: The moves comes as the country's latest female murder victim - a teenager burnt alive - is buried.

[29 May 2013, Rome] - 

Italy's lower chamber of parliament has ratified a European anti-domestic violence treaty as the country buried its latest female murder victim: a 15-year-old girl stabbed 20 times and burnt alive, allegedly by her boyfriend.

The issue of Italy's rising tide of violence against women has been in the spotlight with a raft of headline-grabbing murders of women, often by current or past lovers.

The UN special investigator on violence against women reported last year that, since the 1990s, homicides committed by men against men have fallen in Italy while the number of women murdered by men has increased: in 2010, the figure was 127.

On Tuesday, Italy's lower Chamber of Deputies ratified the Council of Europe's convention on preventing and combating violence against women, sending the bill to the Senate where passage is expected.

The 2011 treaty creates a legal framework to prevent, prosecute and eliminate violence against women. So far, four Council of Europe members have ratified it.

The unanimous vote occurred at the same time as the funeral for Fabiana Luzzi, who was beaten, stabbed 20 times and burnt alive last Friday in the southern town of Corigliano Calabro in Italy's poor region of Calabria.

Italian news reports said her boyfriend, identified only as Davide because he is a minor, was in custody and had confessed.

Details of the crime turned even more gruesome after news reports citing the coroner and prosecutors said Ms Luzzi had bled for two hours and was alive when her boyfriend returned with a tank of gas. She apparently tried unsuccessfully to fight him off before he doused her with the fuel and set her alight.

The UN special rapporteur on violence against women, Rashida Manjoo, said 78 per cent of all violence committed against women in Italy was domestic in nature. Ms Luzzi's friends were quoted in Italian news reports as saying her boyfriend had physically abused her but she had loved him.

In describing the cultural context in which such violence occurs, Ms Manjoo noted that gender stereotypes were "deeply rooted" in Italy, with women underrepresented in public and private senior management positions.




Please note that these reports are hosted by CRIN as a resource for Child Rights campaigners, researchers and other interested parties. Unless otherwise stated, they are not the work of CRIN and their inclusion in our database does not necessarily signify endorsement or agreement with their content by CRIN.