23 Mar 2005

UN surveying domestic and physical violence against Pacific women

10:27 am on 23 March 2005

The prevalence of domestic and physical violence in Samoa has prompted the United Nations to take action.

A recent survey carried out by the UN's Pacific office showed that 40 per cent of women suffer some sort of domestic violence, while 33 percent have suffered physical violence within the marriage.

The United Nations Population Fund's Executive Director, Thoraya Obaid, who's currently in New Zealand, says some serious questions will be asked of Samoa's national system.

"Does it penalise a man who beats a woman or who hurts a woman? are there laws in place, and if laws are in place, are they being implemented and how? So we are looking at interventions and laws. we are looking at police, we are looking at the health system."

Mrs Obaid says a similar survey will be carried out in Solomon Islands and Kiribati.