ARS Fully Supports Domestic Violence Bill in Armenia

The ARS was founded in 1910 in New York

WATERTOWN, Mass.—Earlier this month, Armenian authorities announced a domestic violence bill in Parliament. The proposed law aims to introduce criminal and administrative liability with regard to domestic violence in Armenia. On Oct. 24, the Armenian Relief Society (ARS) International issued the following statement on the proposed bill.


The Armenian Relief Society (ARS) welcomes the decision to enact a law aimed at combating domestic violence in the Republic of Armenia.

As a country that takes pride in having given women the right to vote during the Independent Republic of 1918—and also having appointed a woman to a diplomatic post at a time when women in most of the developed world did not have the right to vote—this bill comes at an important stage for gender equality in today’s Armenia.

Throughout our history, Armenian women have played a particularly important role, from leading as members of royalty during the medieval period, to participating in the national liberation struggle of the past few centuries, to constituting the foundation on which Armenian families and society were rebuilt after the Armenian Genocide—and generally playing vital roles in Armenian society, including in the present day.

Women in Armenia must be allowed to live a life without fear of violence and unjust treatment so they may assume their rightful roles as equal citizens of Armenia—and the world. Clearly, as a society, we must do everything in our power to ensure that every home is safe for all family members, and this law would be a major step toward breaking the cycle of domestic violence.

As an international humanitarian nongovernmental organization registered with the United Nations (UN), we recognize that achieving global gender equality begins at home and should be prioritized on the national, regional, and international levels. The ARS is committed, with renewed vigor, to be a champion for women around the world, and we stand ready to continue to implement and support initiatives to respect, protect, promote, and fulfill all human rights.

We strongly recommend that the Armenian Parliament adopt the bill for the eradication of violence against women, and continue to galvanize the political will necessary for promoting gender equality in Armenian society. Advancing women’s rights and inclusion must be a priority if we are to build a competitive economy and just society for current and future generations.


Guest Contributor

Guest Contributor

Guest contributions to the Armenian Weekly are informative articles or press releases written and submitted by members of the community.


  1. Working towards reducing violence for men, women, animals is a must. However, introducing “gender equality” as an issue where none exists is a dangerous slippery slope. In general it does nothing but divides a culture quickly leading to its inglorious end.

    • I am one of the two co-chairs of the American Armenian Alliance Against Domestic Violence initiated by Virginia Apelian post her fact-finding mission to Yerevan. I wholeheartedly support your statement. Alluding to “gender equality” when laws are gender neutral puzzles me unless there are laws in Armenia, such as inheritance, that is skewed in favor of male offspring. But I doubt laws in Armenia, mostly enacted during the Soviet era, are skewed in favor of one gender over the other. Laws against domestic abuse, by their very nature, apply to both genders as abusers are not necessarily only husbands but at times it’s the female members of the family, such as mother-in-laws, who engage in such despicable acts.

    • An issue where none exists? How so, when several women came forward telling their stories, how they were beaten, in some cases severely, by their husbands; when several women DIED from the abuse? If there is no issue, then the law will have no harmful effect. But if there is an issue, it will protect wives and mothers from abusive husbands. Is this not what Armenian culture stands for?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.