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Many EU capitals have daily demonstrations in support of Ukraine

International Women’s Day – Bulgarian feminists coming out to support Ukraine

International Women’s Day – Bulgarian feminists coming out to support Ukraine

As domestic violence is an ever-present issue, activist groups use the occasion to demand more robust legislation

As demonstrations against the war in Ukraine erupt across European capitals, Bulgarian feminist organisations have decided to show their support for the victims during the annual International Women’s Day march.

This was signalled by Gloria Filipova, a representative of Feminist Mobilisations and the Bilitis Foundation, who organise the march for women’s rights in Sofia on the 8th of March.

According to an interview with BGNES news agency, Filipova explained that apart from their usual calls for a more robust legislative framework against domestic violence in Bulgaria, a new focus of the march would be to show solidarity with Ukraine and the displaced women.

She added: “We need to show that wars like this are unacceptable in the 21st century.”

Domestic violence is an active issue

The march on International Women’s Day in Sofia is happening for the sixth year in a row. It has served as an outlet for different organisations and citizens to petition the government to introduce more robust laws on domestic violence.

According to Filipova, last year over 20 women lost their life due to domestic violence in Bulgaria and the march on International Women’s Day is a chance to stand against violence, both at home and on the street.

She also said that the activist group Feminist Mobilisations supports the current law on domestic violence, which Bulgaria’s current government is developing. At the same time, according to the group, the government should focus on prevention as much as on penalisation. One way they could do that is by establishing more centres aimed at helping victims. Filipova explained that many major cities in the country still lack adequate infrastructure to help victims.

She continued: “We hope to see more comprehensive legislation that covers all types of domestic violence, including financial and psychological. We hope that soon there will be some development and the proposals we made, because we also made proposals to the law what can be changed, to be adopted.”

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