During the first few weeks of the COVID-19 quarantine in Syria, civil society actors raised the alarm towards the drastic increase in “Domestic Violence Against Women-DVAW” incidents reported by women rights activists, this issue has long been debated by civil society and women rights activists as a societal issue.
This paper aims to provide a brief overview of DVAW in the Syrian context from its social and legal aspects. It will review the initiatives taken by the Syrian government and civil society actors to address this issue over the past years. It will then outline the main factors that contributed to a hike in DVAW cases during the quarantine as well as the different forms of violence against women reported by activists and their associated challenges. Finally, the paper will conclude with policy recommendations for the relevant actors in the Syrian context and in reference to the political process.
The information presented in this paper is based on a combination of open source material collected from official government websites and online reports of international non-government organizations. Perhaps more importantly, information was also obtained from non-structured interviews with women rights activists and reports produced by Syrian civil society actors.