Domestic violence has become one of the most common law infringements in Tonga over the past five years.

Acting Police Commissioner Tevita Vailea told a local Press Club event that between January and June this year there were 537 domestic violence cases reported, with 117 Police Safety Orders issued, although there were only 99 prosecutions.

Vailea could not put a number on the cases that may have been unreported, but it has often been said the majority of incidents fit that category.

The acting Commissioner said there needed to be co-operative efforts involving the community and the police to break the cycle of domestic violence.

“We have a responsibility to our future generations to break the cycle of violence,” he said.

“The home should be a place of peace that children want to come home to, not stay away because of the fear of violence.”

“Domestic violence is an offence in Tonga, and Tonga Police urge people to report it to allow them to prosecute perpetrators and bring them to account.”

Sexual violence against women and girls also appears to have worsened with soaring levels of sexual assault and rape.

Recently there have been rape cases before the courts each week, even during the Covid-19 lockdown.

SOURCE – RADIO NZ

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