The press representative of the Greek police, Konstantina Dimoglidou, told MEGA tv that the incidents of domestic violence in the country are shocking, with the police noting on average 500 complaints per week.

Just over last week, which marked the Greek Orthodox Easter holiday in the country, 488 complaints of abuse were lodged which led to 278 arrests.

According to Dimoglidou, the majority of those filing complaints are young girls, and their perpetrators usually deny the charges. Looking at domestic violence within the family context, she explains that there is no correlation between socioeconomic class and abuse.

Dimoglidou explained to MEGA tv that Greece has increased the resources dedicated to assisting battered women and that the country provides over 127 shelters across the country.

Moreover, she said that the country is trying to change the way it handles domestic violence. “Even if the woman does not want to leave her home environment, we try to convince her to leave,” said Dimoglidou.

Over the past few years, reported incidents of domestic violence have spiked in Greece, with several cases particularly shocking public opinion and even being covered by international press.

On the heels of the stabbing and murder of a 28-year-old woman by her partner, right outside of police station in early April, Greek Minister of Citizen Protection Michalis Chrisochoidis presented a set of new guidelines to improve police management and responses to incidents of domestic violence.

In his address, the Citizen Protection Minister urged officers to handle victims with empathy and provide them with full support. “Citizens want and must feel safe when they come to us. In every case of domestic violence, we are obligated to do everything possible to ensure that the woman feels safe and to be sure before she leaves there, that she will continue to be safe,” he emphasized.

By the end of May, 45 new Domestic Violence Response Offices are slated to be established throughout Greece, and the use of the Panic Button will be expanded nationwide.

Meanwhile, the European Council has recently passed landmark legislation to combat violence against women.