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Domestic Violence Against Palestinian Women on Rise in Gaza

Half of Gaza's married women are subjected to some form of domestic violence, but authorities do not want to hear about it.
Palestinians women participate in a demonstration against the growing chaos in the Palestinian territories outside Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' headquarters in Gaza City December 20, 2005. Abbas has vowed to end armed chaos in Gaza and the West Bank. A Palestinian human rights group said that over 200 Palestinians have been killed in feuds and internal violence in 2005 in growing lawlessness. REUTERS/Mohammed Salem - RTR1BCF3
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GAZA — “Ibtissam,” a 27-year-old woman from the town of Beit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip, asked for a number of guarantees before beginning to talk, among them that her real name not be used and that her story not be relayed to organizations assisting battered women. Despite attempts to reassure her when she met with Al-Monitor in public, she kept looking behind her for fear that her husband or one of his relatives might see her.

She had a gauze patch over one eye, stemming from a punch by her husband. Yet, that was not her motivation for meeting with Al-Monitor. Rather, what compelled her to be interviewed was her desire to make a change in her life. Thus, she recounted the details of her story, full of constant violence, including beatings and death threats, at the hands of her husband.

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