Time for European commitment to banishing violence against women
(Brussels, 8 March 2012) On International Women’s Day, Amnesty International has challenged the European Union to show tangible progress in freeing Europe from violence against women. The organisation has warned the EU and its member states against using double standards and failing to act on their own existing commitments, while criticising non-EU countries for their shortcomings on violence against women.
In May last year, the Council of Europe’s Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence was opened for signature in Istanbul. This is a practical blueprint for comprehensive action to eradicate violence against women. Ten months later, there has been no official ratification, and only 18 of the 47 Council of Europe member states have signed.
“There’s simply no excuse for such slow progress by Europe in its own backyard. The EU’s human rights credibility is also at stake”, said Nicolas Beger, Director of Amnesty international’s European Institutions Office. “The Union itself must certainly play a more robust and tangible part in pressing for the protection of women’s rights in non-EU countries. This demands more than words. But it will never be credible until it makes real progress in freeing the European continent from the scourge of violence against women.”
Amnesty International has called for renewed effort by all 47 CoE states plus the EU to ensure the convention is put into action.
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