One in five women in Cyprus over the age of 15 have been the victims of physical or sexual violence at the hands of a partner.
The figure was cited on Saturday by Ombudswoman Eliza Savvidou at an event organised to raise awareness of violence against women.
Savvidou said the figure of one in five could even be higher as many women choose not to go to the police.
She also said that 39 per cent of women over 15 in Cyprus have suffered psychological violence at the hands of a partner.
Although the rates were lower than the EU average, Savvidou said they were high enough and demonstrates that the problem of violence was real and very serious.
Justice Minister Ionas Nicolaou, who also addressed the event, said his ministry was working on a series of legal measures that would criminalise all forms of violence against women and to increase the penalties under those laws that already exist.
It is also considering the accession of Cyprus to the Council of Europe`s Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence.
“The government places this serious issue of violence against women among its high priorities and we are determined to take all necessary measures to address it,” he pledged. (CNA)