/Vranje, February 22, 2021/ In Vranje, on Saturday, February 20, 2021, a 27-year-old girl was brutally killed by a man in the city center and in front of eyewitnesses. At the same time as the murder, SOS Helpline Vranje team placed another woman in the Safe House, due to direct threats of murder by her husband. These events show us how deeply rooted violence and the degraded position of women are in our environment.
According to media reports, three women have been killed in a family-partner context in Serbia since the beginning of the year, and in another case there is a suspicion that a woman was killed by her husband.
Data for the last 2 decades speak of more than 300 women killed. Since 2014, 13 women have been killed in the Pčinja district. The killers are most often men, and most murders are committed with firearms and knives. The numbers can be even higher, because the data were collected from media reports, and official statistics on the number of femicides in Serbia do not yet exist. This indicates that a number of legal measures and strategies aimed at preventing and combating violence against women have not responded adequately.
The question is whether the murder of a 27-year-old girl could have been prevented? We note that the perpetrator of this brutal act against a young girl is a man who has previously been convicted of murdering a woman, as well as attempted murder. The media state that the killer is a returnee from the battlefield and that he explained the horrors of war in detail in one of the previous court proceedings. The third brutal attack confirms the shortcomings of a system in which procedures for monitoring and controlling former convicts for violence against women and girls and returnees from the battlefield, and good security risk assessments, have not been developed.
Women’s Network Against Violence, SOS Helpline and SOS Corner For Girls Vranje strongly condemn the reaction of the environment to this event, as well as the sensationalism present in the media, which seeks guilt in the girl, even when she was brutally killed. We call on all fellow citizens, but also the media and representatives of institutions to notice one important fact, that it is FEMICID, and that one woman’s life was brutally taken away. The fact that the girl was „famous for her beauty“, the emphasis that this is a „crime of passion“, as well as speculations as to whether or not she was in a partnership with the killer are not, and should never be emphasized in the context of this brutal act. they may be cited as an occasion or justification for any violence against girls.
We demand direct responsibility from the competent institutions.
THE VICTIM IS NEVER GUILTY! THE RESPONSIBILITY IS ON THE BULLY!
WOMEN’S NETWORK AGAINST VIOLENCE
SOS HELPLINE VRANJE
SOS CORNER FOR GIRLS VRANJE