The government of Timor-Leste recognizes gender-based violence as a serious social problem in Timor-Leste and has identified the Law Against Domestic Violence as a priority in the National Development Plan (2002), the Sectoral Investment Programme for Rights, Equality and Justice, and as part of its achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.
The Law against Domestic Violence (LADV) was passed by the National Parliament in May 3, 2010 and was officially published as Law N° 7/2010. This law reinforces the provisions of the Penal Code in addition to establishing a mechanism to prevent DV, promote victim’s rights and guarantee the protection of victims. As such, the law strengthens the support for victims and defines the responsibilities of different government institutions and their collaboration with civil society organizations. This law marked the shift from traditional conflict resolution to a formal criminal justice system. Article 36 of the LADV reinforces all crimes of DV as public crimes. It also does not make any exemptions, and as such facilitates the effective prosecution of perpetrators including a husband/partner.
Since the LADV made any form of DV a public crime, the dissemination of the LADV has been done in all districts targeting local authorities, village chiefs, traditional leaders, communities and universities. To reach remote communities in the fight against stereotypes, especially concerning violence against women, the members of the referral network, including government and non-government organizations together with the judicial actors, implemented number of sensitization programmes through national and community radios regarding various topics such as human right and GBV.
Source of Information
Response of the Government of Timor-Leste to the questionnaire on violence against women, February 2009
The Government of Timor-Leste's submission for the 2016 Secretary General’s Report on the implementation of the General Assembly Resolutions on Intensification of efforts to eliminate all forms of violence against women and girls, on Trafficking in women and girls,and on Intensifying global efforts for the elimination of female genital mutilations, P.2 & P.