Nepal: UN worried over risk to victim, others after conviction in domestic abuse case

22 January 2009

The United Nations human rights office has urged Nepalese authorities to ensure the safety of the wife and others involved in a domestic violence case, who have reportedly received threats after the victim’s husband was convicted of trying to kill her by setting her on fire.

In a news release issued in Nepalgunj, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Nepal (OHCHR-Nepal) said it is “deeply concerned about reports of threats received by the victim, human rights defenders and others in relation to their involvement in the case of Hasrun Idrisi, which was decided by the Banke District Court on 19 January.

“The Office strongly urges the state authorities, including the Nepal Police and Chief District Officer, to take measures to ensure the security of the victim, her family, witnesses, the lawyers representing the victim, and other human rights defenders, in line with their obligations under domestic law,” added the OHCHR-Nepal statement.

In a case that highlighted the serious issue of domestic violence in Nepal, Ms. Idrisi’s husband and a member of his family were convicted for attempted murder by setting her on fire on 6 November 2007. Ms. Idrisi suffered severe burns as a result of the attack.

OHCHR-Nepal encouraged the Government to ensure that “robust” legislation on domestic violence, consistent with international standards, be passed as a matter of priority.


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