Panel titled ‘Law and femicide – a comparative presentation of legal solutions and systemic responses in the region (BiH, Montenegro, Croatia and Serbia)’ held

Yesterday, at 18:00, a panel titled ‘Law and femicide – a comparative overview of legal solutions and systemic responses in the region (BiH, Montenegro, Croatia and Serbia)’ was held via the Zoom platform.

The panel is part of this year’s ‘16 Days of Activism’ Campaign and it was organized by the TPO Foundation in cooperation with the University Gender Resource Center (UNIGeRC) as part of the UNIGEM project.

Persons from the region took the role of panelists, i.e. there was one person from each country where the UNIGEM project has its partner institutions. The participants were: Kosana Beker (program director of FemPlatz, Pančevo, Serbia), Prof. Dr Maja Munivrana (professor of Criminal Law at the Faculty of Law in Zagreb, Croatia), Maja Raičević (NGO Center for Women’s Rights, Montenegro) and Nermin Šehović, (BiH Federal Police, doctor of legal sciences and specialist in the field of criminal law). The panel was moderated by Dunja Bonacci Skenderović (independent consultant, Bonacci Ltd.).

Since femicide is not legally regulated in any country in the region (neither in the criminal code nor in a special law), the issues discussed by the panelists regarded the ways of prosecuting the perpetrators of femicide in the countries of the region.

Knowing that femicide, especially intimate partner femicide, is often preceded by long-term abuse, the panelists also offered their insights into current judicial practice, i.e. the question of whether practice recognizes the mentioned long-term abuse during trials.

Also, the panel was used to consider the issue of introduction of femicide into the criminal law or its definition through a special law (as, for example, Belgium did), and if that would make any changes – either in regard to reduction of the number of femicides, or in regard to introduction of more strict penalties.