Australian and Timorese Judges Share Best Practices in Domestic and Sexual Violence Cases
Dili, August 2, 2016 — Today, Timorese judges together with twelve prosecutors attended a continuing legal education event at Dili District Court in Timor-Leste, as part of a week-long judicial conference hosted by The Asia Foundation. The continuing legal education program is being supported by The Asia Foundation’s Nabilan (Ending Violence Against Women) Program, the National Judicial College of Australia and the Law Council of Australia.
“Timorese and Australian judges share a determination to protect those at risk from violence within their families and in their own homes,” said Her Honour Judge Fleur Kingham from the District Court of Queensland. “We share an optimism that the law has a positive role to play in achieving that goal.”
Today’s activities focused on how judges and prosecutors can manage the court better and protect victims in domestic violence and sexual assault cases. The participants discussed topics including orders removing offenders from the family home, and the use of special measures such as special victim waiting rooms in court buildings to ensure witnesses are not threatened while giving evidence. The participants also heard presentations on the use of medical evidence, and statistics on violence against women in Timor-Leste.
“We are pleased with the training offered by our Australian colleagues,” said Dra. Maria Natercia Gusmao Perreira from the Timor-Leste Court of Appeal. “I hope that over these days, we can exchange good dialogue, and our respective challenges as judges.”
The Nabilan Program is an eight year initiative of the Australian Government. The program reflects an innovative approach by the Australian Government to work on ending violence against women which recognizes the centrality of gender equality to work in the sector and the need for holistic government efforts. The program goal is to reduce the proportion of women who have experienced violence, and to better meet the needs of women and children affected by violence. The Nabilan Program is funded by the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
The Asia Foundation is a nonprofit international development organization committed to improving lives across a dynamic and developing Asia. Informed by six decades of experience and deep local expertise, our work across the region addresses five overarching goals—strengthen governance, empower women, expand economic opportunity, increase environmental resilience, and promote regional cooperation.
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