SHOCK INCREASE IN DOMESTIC VIOLENCE: Our Women under Siege; REPORT SHOWS SOMEONE'S MUM,DAUGHTER OR SISTER WILL BE THE VICTIM OF ATTACK IN SCOTLAND TODAY

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Byline: SIOBHAN McFADYEN

THE number of terrified Scots women seeking refuge from violent partners has shot up by 10 per cent in just 12 months.

Alarming figures from Scottish Women's Aid show that almost 72,000 women went to them for help - 7,000 up on the previous year.

It's a shameful toll which means someone's mother, daughter or sister will subjected to a sickening attack in Scotland today.

But the support network is cracking under the pressure of helping these women escape the hell of sexual, physical or emotional abuse in the home.

Under-pressure welfare centres were forced to turn away THREE-QUARTERS of the women who turned to them for sanctuary.

A staggering 5,873 women asked for refuge but the charity could only find temporary homes for 1,661, along with 2,037 children.

Shamefully, 3,335 women and 4,625 kids were also turned away through lack of resources.

Heather Williams, of Women's Aid, said: "The incidence of domestic abuse is shocking.

"Fourteen women were murdered by their partners last year and two women die every day in the UK.

"We have been inundated by requests for support and acted upon 75,977 requests last year. With refuges so badly over-run and services stretched to the limit, it's important we try to raise the vital funds.

"Domestic abuse is any form of physical or sexual assault and mental torment.

"It's important, especially with the rise in reported crime on the run up to Christmas, that we try to get our vital message across."

Women's Aid is praying an ad campaign by the Scottish Executive, building on last year's high-profile TV blitz, will help stem the tide of violence.

Police are also launching a Christmas Crackdown on Domestic Abuse. …