Commission proposes EU accession to international Convention to fight violence against women

The European Commission has proposed for the European Union to ratify the Council of Europe’s Istanbul Convention, a comprehensive international treaty on combatting violence against women and domestic violence. Věra Jourová, Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality said: “Our proposal sends a clear message: victims of violence against women must be better protected across Europe. One in three women in the EU has experienced physical or sexual violence, or both. More than half of all women have experienced sexual harassment after the age of 15. These figures are unacceptable and this goes against our values. The proposal for the EU to ratify the Istanbul Convention is a step forward both for our fight against violence and in guaranteeing gender equality. To ensure coherent implementation at all levels, I also call on those Member States who have not yet ratified the Convention to do so swiftly. “After accession, the EU and its Member States, within their respective competences, will ensure that a number of rights and obligations are in place to protect women (criminalisation of gender-based violence, accessibility of shelters, support through telephone lines…). A press release and a factsheet are available online.

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