SHARE
COPY LINK

CRIME

Domestic violence on the rise in Germany with one woman killed every three days

The number of victims of domestic violence in Germany is rising, new figures show.

Domestic violence on the rise in Germany with one woman killed every three days
Domestic abuse is rising in Germany. Photo: DPA

Last year 122 women in Germany were killed by their partner or ex-partner, according to the Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA).

“Every day an attempt takes place, every third day the attempt is actually carried out,” said Family Minister Franziska Giffey, of the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD), reported Spiegel on Monday.

In total, more than 114,000 women were victims of domestic violence, threats or coercion by their husbands, partners or ex-partners in 2018.

BKA data shows the number of deaths fell by 25 last year compared to 2017. Overall, however, there were more cases of violence. The number rose from 113,965 to 114,393 during this time.

Graph prepared for The Local by Statista

Giffey was set to reveal the latest figures on domestic violence at a presentation in Berlin on Monday. The event is taking place on November 25th, International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

The offences recorded by German police range from bodily harm to murder and manslaughter. Giffey said the figures were alarming – especially as the number of unreported cases is likely even higher.

In 2018, a total of 140,000 people were victims of domestic abuse, the SPD politician said. The proportion of women affected is more than 81 percent.

There were also some 26,000 men who were threatened, coerced or attacked by their partners or ex-partners. There has been an increasing number of male victims in recent years.

What's Germany doing to help victims?

The government is aiming raise awareness and encourage victims of abuse to seek support. A website has been set up with information for victims as part of a nationwide initiative.

Germany also wants to expand its number of refuge centres for women. Nationwide there are currently about 350 women's shelters.

Within the next four years, the government wants to provide €120 million for women's shelters and women's counselling centres. Women affected by violence will be legally entitled to a place in a shelter in future, the government hopes. “This will be our future aim,” said Giffey.

At the moment, however, centres are overcrowded and there are not enough spaces. Giffey said there were gaps in rural areas as well as big cities and the government wanted to address these problems.

Vocabulary

Domestic violence – (die) häusliche Gewalt

Violence in relationships – (die) Partnerschaftsgewalt

Bodily harm – (die) Körperverletzung

Murder – (der) Mord

Manslaughter – (der) Totschlag

Attempt – (der) Versuch

Nationwide initiative – (die) bundesweite Initiative

Women's shelters – (die) Frauenhäusern

We're aiming to help our readers improve their German by translating vocabulary from some of our news stories. Did you find this article useful? Let us know.

GERMANY AND ISRAEL

Germany in talks on further payout for 1972 Olympics victims

The German government says it is in talks over further compensation for victims of the attack on the Munich Olympics, as the 50th anniversary of the atrocity approaches.

Germany in talks on further payout for 1972 Olympics victims

Ahead of the commemoration in September, relatives of the Israelis killed have indicated they are unhappy with what Germany is offering.

“Conversations based on trust are taking place with representatives of the victims’ families,” a German interior ministry spokesman told AFP when asked about the negotiations.

He did not specify who would benefit or how much money had been earmarked, saying only that any package would “again” be financed by the federal government, the state of Bavaria and the city of Munich.

On September 5th, 1972, eight gunmen broke into the Israeli team’s flat at the Olympic village, shooting dead two and taking nine Israelis hostage, threatening to kill them unless 232 Palestinian prisoners were released.

West German police responded with a bungled rescue operation in which all nine hostages were killed, along with five of the eight hostage-takers and a police officer.

An armed police officer in a tracksuit secures the block where terrorists  held Israeli hostages at the Olympic Village in Munich on 5th September 1972.

An armed police officer in a tracksuit secures the block where terrorists held Israeli hostages at the Olympic Village in Munich on 5th September 1972. Photo: picture alliance / dpa | Horst Ossingert

The spokeswoman for the victims’ families, Ankie Spitzer, told the German media group RND that the amount currently on the table was “insulting” and threatened a boycott of this year’s commemorations.

She said Berlin was offering a total of €10 million including around €4.5 million already provided in compensation between 1972 and 2002 — an amount she said did not correspond to international standards. 

“We are angry and disappointed,” said Spitzer, the widow of fencing coach Andre Spitzer who was killed in the attack. “We never wanted to talk publicly about money but now we are forced to.”

RND reported that the German and Israeli governments would like to see an accord by August 15th.

The interior ministry spokesman said that beyond compensation, Germany intended to use the anniversary for fresh “historical appraisal, remembrance and recognition”.

He said this would include the formation of a commission of German and Israeli historians to “comprehensively” establish what happened “from the perspective of the year 2022”.

This would lead to “an offer of further acts of acknowledgement of the relatives of the victims of the attack” and the “grave consequences” they suffered.

SHOW COMMENTS