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© 2010 Zohra Bensemra/Reuters “Salwa” is a 39-year-old woman from Annaba with two children and a long history of abuse by her husband.
She told Human Rights Watch that he started beating her from the early days of their marriage in 2006.
In addition, the scope of the definition of domestic violence does not include all individuals.
Police inaction, insufficient shelter space, and ineffective investigation and prosecution often leave domestic violence survivors in Algeria at risk of further mistreatment despite a new law criminalizing spousal abuse.
A year later, the court granted her request for divorce and ordered her husband to pay alimony.
When he did not comply, she filed a complaint against him.
Such barriers are compounded by the failures of the Algerian government to adequately prevent domestic violence, protect survivors, and create a comprehensive system for the prosecution of perpetrators.
The shortcomings of the Algerian government’s response to the problem include a lack of services for survivors of domestic violence, particularly shelters; a lack of measures for prevention of violence such as use of educational curricula to modify discriminatory social and cultural patterns of behavior as well as derogatory gender stereotypes; insufficient protection from abusers; and an inadequate response from law enforcement.