Tunisian woman murdered after withdrawing domestic violence complaint

Refka Cherni

A Tunisian woman has been shot dead by her policeman husband after withdrawing a complaint against him for domestic violence.

In a case which has outraged Tunisian society, Refka Cherni, a 26 year old mother from the Kef region, was shot five times, according to lawyer Mounir Bel Salha.

Following a domestic dispute, the National Guard agent fired several shots at his wife using a police issue weapon. She was seriously injured and rushed in critical condition to the Kef regional hospital where she was placed in intensive care, later succumbing to her injuries.

Refka Cherni and her huisband

A security patrol was dispatched to the scene and the officer was arrested.

According to the El Kef Woman and Citizenship Association, the wife had already been the victim of violence committed by her husband. She even reportedly filed a complaint against him last Friday for domestic violence, 48 hours before he did it again and, this time, ended up murdering her.

The Ministry of Women, Family and Seniors, strongly condemned the “heinous crime,” deploring the high level of gender-based domestic violence in Tunisia in recent times, in particular during the Covid-19 crisis and during the month of Ramadan.

The ministry warned against the “trivialisation of all forms of violence against women, whether in the private or public sphere,” and called for intervention immediately by enforcing the law against attackers before threats are carried out.”

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