Seventy percent of women in eight Eastern European countries have experienced sexual harassment, stalking, domestic abuse or other types of violence since the age of 15, according to a study published on Wednesday.
Psychological violence, such as controlling or abusive behavior, is the most widespread form of domestic violence reported in the survey, carried out by the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). Sixty percent of women said they have experienced this type of violence. Twenty-three percent said they have been physically or sexually abused by their partner, according to POLITICO.
The study is based on over 15,000 face-to-face interviews in spring and summer 2018 in eight countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia and Ukraine.
The study found 74 percent of women do not feel well-informed about what to do if they experience violence. Only 7 percent of women who experience violence from their current partner contacted the police directly following a serious violent incident.
OSCE Secretary-General Thomas Greminger urged politicians to use the study's findings to come up with better policies to crack down on violence against women, improve services for survivors and establish greater security for women and girls overall.