Estevao Nuno – The Judicial System Monitoring Program (JSMP) has raised awareness in schools in six districts of laws prohibiting domestic violence.
JSMP executive director Luis Oliveira Sampaio said the districts involved were Liquisa, Ermera, Maliana, Same and Viqueque. Oe-Cusse would be included in the near future, he said.
Oriental University of Timor Lorosa'e law student Jose Fernandes praised the program.
"Many people are torturing their families but (the victims) don't know how to report incidents to the national police. Particularly in rural areas, domestic violence victims do not know how to get out," he said. "Often they will just go to their local authorities to try to solve the problem."
Commission G (ethics) member Angelica da Costa said domestic violence rates were high despite the laws. "We in Commission G have done research in the sukus and found that domestic violence is common as people do not have access to information," he said.