Christchurch a ‘living hell’ for Asian brides
Christchurch has become a “living hell” for some Asian women married to abusive Kiwi husbands, a Chinese-language newspaper reports.
iBall, a bilingual, weekly paper, says under the headline “Living Hell” that at least eight Chinese women were assaulted by their Christchurch husbands last month.
It published harrowing first-hand accounts from two women, brought to New Zealand after meeting their husbands over the internet or through a dating agency, about being beaten, and in one instance being forced to have sex with other men.
The eight women in the report had contacted the Shakti Ethnic Women’s Support Group for help.
The group then approached the newspaper to help it to publicise the women’s plight. Even the limited number of copies already distributed had prompted more Asian women to complain to the newspaper, Tan said.
One woman complained she had no control over money in her relationship with her New Zealand husband, and another woman was not allowed to associate with other Asians.
A spokeswoman for Shakti said the police were dealing with the issue case by case.
“The only thing we can do is work with the women,” she said.
“This is a relationship with two consenting adults.
“We can’t do much more than educate women about their rights.”
Christchurch police Asian liaison officer Rakesh Naidoo said he was not personally aware of any cases of domestic violence by New Zealand men on their Asian wives, but added: “If it’s taking place in one particular community, we would have a chat with them.
“If there are women who are being abused, it’s serious,” he said.
“We’d like to hear from them.”
Police family violence co-ordinator Pegeen O’Rourke said the problem had to be seen in the context of Christchurch police attending more than 400 incidents of domestic violence a month.