The Deadly Impact of Failure to Protect

The 86-page report, “Combatting Domestic Violence in Turkey: The Deadly Impact of Failure to Protect,” found failure to enforce court orders leaves women open to continuing abuse from current or former husbands and partners. In some cases, women have been killed despite having obtained restraining orders intended to protect them. The research took place against the backdrop of Turkey’s July 2021 withdrawal from the Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combatting Violence against Women and Domestic Violence, known as the Istanbul Convention.


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  • Weak State Response to Domestic Violence in Tajikistan

    This report and its recommendations focus on violence against women by male partners and their relatives, including mothers-in-law.

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  • Weak State Response to Domestic Violence in Russia

    This report details the barriers survivors face in reporting abuse and getting help. They include social stigma, lack of awareness, and lack of trust in police.

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  • Impunity in Domestic Violence Cases in the Brazilian State of Roraima

    This report examines systemic problems in responding to domestic violence in the state. Human Rights Watch documented 31 cases of domestic violence, and interviewed victims, police, and justice officials. The organization found failures at all points in the system for responding to domestic abuse. 

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    Cover of the Brazil Report
  • State Response to Domestic Violence in Algeria

    This report found that domestic violence survivors face an uphill struggle to obtain justice and personal security.

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    Cover of the Algeria Report
  • Women and Saudi Arabia’s Male Guardianship System

    This report examines in detail the panoply of formal and informal barriers women in Saudi Arabia face when attempting to make decisions or take action without the presence or consent of a male relative.

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    Cover for Saudi Arabia Report
  • Abuse and Exploitation of Migrant Domestic Workers in Oman

    This report documents how Oman’s kafala(sponsorship) immigrant labor system and lack of labor law protections leaves migrant domestic workers exposed to abuse and exploitation by employers, whose consent they need to change jobs.

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    cover image for Oman Report
  • Reparations for Survivors of Kenya’s 2007-2008 Post-Election Sexual Violence

    This report is based on interviews with 163 women and girls, nine male survivors, and witnesses of rape or other sexual violence in the post-election period.

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    Cover image for Kenya report
  • Family Violence in Papua New Guinea

    This 59-page report documents systemic failures in how the government responds to domestic violence – failures which often leave women unprotected and subject to ongoing violence, even when they have gone to great lengths to seek help and justice.


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  • State Response to Domestic Violence in Kyrgyzstan

    This 98-page report documents obstacles to accessing help or justice in cases of severe domestic abuse.

  • Lack of Protection from Domestic Violence in Hungary

    The 58-page report documents chronic brutal violence against women by their intimate partners and the challenges women face in seeking state protection and services.

  • Abusive Policing and Failures in Protection of Indigenous Women and Girls in Northern British Columbia, Canada

    The 89-page report documents both ongoing police failures to protect indigenous women and girls in the north from violence and violent behavior by police officers against women and girls.

  • Migrant Women’s Access to Protection for Family Violence in Belgium

    This 59-page report found three major protection gaps for migrant women who experience domestic violence in that country. Women who migrate to Belgium to join a husband or partner may face deportation if they report the violence during the period when their status is being confirmed, as do undocumented migrant women.
  • Child Marriage in Yemen

    This 54-page report documents the lifelong damage to girls who are forced to marry young. Yemeni girls and women told Human Rights Watch about being forced into child marriages by their families, and then having no control over whether and when to bear children and other important aspects of their lives.
  • Family Violence in Turkey and Access to Protection

    This report documents brutal and long-lasting violence against women and girls by husbands, partners, and family members and the survivors’ struggle to seek protection. Turkey has strong protection laws, setting out requirements for shelters for abused women and protection orders.
  • India’s Need for Sound Standards for Conducting and Interpreting Forensic Examinations of Rape Survivors

    This 54-page report documents the continued use of the archaic practice and the continued reliance on the "results" by many defense counsel and courts.