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Thousands rally in Madrid against domestic violence


Spain

Thousands rally in Madrid against domestic violence

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Some 21,00 people gathered in Madrid on Saturday to demonstrate against domestic violence.

Members of hundreds of women’s groups from across Spain traveled to the capital to take part.

Forty-one women have died at the hands of their partners or ex-partners so far this year, according to Spanish government data. Only seven of the victims had complained before.

Taking part in the demonstration, former victim Olga Aranza said: “I think it’s important that people like me demonstrate today, because I’m an example of a woman who’s been able to get out of domestic violence.

“And that means that all abused women can also get out violence and that they deserve a better life. You really can get out.”

“I think it’s essential that we men also take part here in this demonstration, so that we send a clear message to women, telling them that they are not alone in this struggle,” said demonstrator Miguel Navarro.

Spain is seen as a pioneer in Europe on legislation to combat violence against women.

A 2004 law introduced an emergency phone number that doesn’t appear on the telephone bill – as well as free legal assistance and accommodation for abused women.

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