Just three years after its opening for signature in Istanbul, the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence is entering into force on 1 August 2014. To date, 13 member states of the Council of Europe have ratified this new human rights treaty and another 23 states have signed it. The convention is open for accession by states which are not Council of Europe members.
On the occasion of the entry into force of the Istanbul Convention, the Secretary General of the Council of Europe stated: “All need to act now to improve the lives of the many women and girls who are subjected to violence simply because of their gender”.
The framework this convention creates is a blueprint for a co-ordinated, victim-centred approach to combating all forms of violence against women and domestic violence. Its focus on violence against women as gender-based violence and its links with gender inequality are testament to the fact that the Council of Europe is leading international efforts in the protection of women’s human rights. For this reason, the convention addresses domestic violence as a form of gender-based violence while not losing sight of male, child and elderly victims of domestic violence, to whom the convention may be applied if states parties wish.
With the entry into force of the Istanbul Convention, a glaring gap in the protection of women’s rights in Europe is being closed. Legally-binding standards to improve the prevention of violence, the protection of victims, and the prosecution of perpetrators through an integrated set of policies are now available. The effective implementation of the convention’s provisions will be ensured by a monitoring mechanism which will be set up by early 2015.
The Istanbul Convention is designed to become the most important protection tool for women around the world. Its swift entry into force would not have been possible without the commitment of experts and activists like you.
The Council of Europe team promoting the Istanbul Convention would like to thank you for your support and commitment to making this important convention a reality. Let’s make sure all states the world over adhere to it – one way or another!
Go to the Council of Europe website to follow this issue that sets the model for combating gender violence for the rest of the world.
Filed under: Equality & Human Rights
,Global Women's Issues
,UN Millenium Development Goals (MDG)
,Women and Violence