15 May 2013

Albania: Medica Tirana 1999-2013

A generation after the fall of the communist dictatorship, Albanian women still suffer severely due to patriarchal structures. Poverty, high unemployment and violence char-acterise their daily lives. Beginning in 1999, Medica Tirana provided support for thousands of women and helped to foster public discourse on the issues of forced marriage, domestic violence and blood feuds. Medica Tirana ceased its activities in April 2013.

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19 December 2012

Medica Zenica: war is not over - the forgotten suffering of Bosnian woman

Medica Zenica, Bosnia. More than twenty years have passed since the first publication of reports on mass rape of Bosnian women. Several thousand women have been systematically raped, tortured and detained in camps by Serbian soldiers during the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina – some of them for weeks. Women of all ages became part of the malicious warfare strategy, serving the demoralisation of the enemy and the ethnic expulsion within the territories claimed by the Serbs. According to the United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef), there were 20,000 cases of rape. Other sources estimate up to 50,000 cases.

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08 February 2012

Kosovo: Medica Kosova and Medica Gjakova

Estimates suggest 20,000 women were raped during the Kosovo War (1998-1999). Many are still suffering from the consequences of the violence. Since 1999, Medica Kosova has been supporting survivors with comprehensive advice and the establishment of self-help groups. In 2011, the newly founded organisation Medica Gjakova also began to work in the region with a similar programme.

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15 May 2011

Medica Kosova: Breaking the silence

During the Kosova War, Serbian members of the military raped thousands of Kosova Albanian women and girls, and Albanian militiamen committed acts of terrible violence against Roma women. The military razed houses, destroyed fields and killed men and boys. What remains are many war widows and women who have to date not managed to speak about what happened to them. For rape is regarded as a “violation of honour” in traditional Kosovan society. It is a taboo subject.

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22 March 2011

Medica Tirana: The Therapy Centre in Tirana

Albania is one of the poorest countries in Europe, almost forgotten is its long history of conflict. As a result of the Balkan wars, the communist dictatorship of Enver Hoxha and the wars in Yugoslavia, Albania still suffers from a fragile state, corruption, crime, unemployment and rural exodus. Despite its increasing orientation towards the European Union, the situation of many women and girls continues to be precarious. While the country has economic progress, patriarchal traditions and blood vengeance just return back to the slums, the rural areas and the suburbs. The everyday life of many Albanian women is not only marked by poverty and high unemployment, but also by trafficking in women, violence and domination by male family members.

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