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New project launched in Ukraine to combat violence against women

On 1 January 2021, the Council of Europe launched a new two-year project, entitled “Combatting violence against women in Ukraine” (COVAW).

The COVAW project has been designed in line with the Council of Europe Action Plan for Ukraine (2018-2022) as regards supporting national legislation and policy reforms related to combatting domestic violence, and raising awareness of authorities and the Ukrainian public concerning both the Istanbul Convention and violence against women.

The COVAW project aims ultimately to strengthen women's human rights in Ukraine, including advocating for ratification of the Istanbul Convention which was signed by Ukraine in 2011 but has not yet been ratified. The two components of COVAW – awareness raising and legislative frameworks – provide a double-pronged level of support to Ukraine in preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence in line with the standards of the Istanbul Convention

The COVAW project will place considerable focus on raising awareness regarding the Istanbul Convention in the Verkhovna Rada and at multiple levels of government to support the path towards ratification of the Istanbul Convention. Awareness raising activities will further focus on the general public in diverse regions of Ukraine, bringing to light both the problem of violence against women and domestic violence in Ukraine, the need to combat it, and the role and benefits of the Istanbul Convention and other international standards in this area. This will include raising society’s awareness of the need to combat stereotypes and gender inequality, as well as regarding risks of domestic violence.

The Council of Europe, through COVAW, will continue to support the enhancement of legislative and institutional frameworks, drawing Ukraine closer to full implementation of the Istanbul Convention. Considering steps taken by Ukraine to align its national legal and policy framework with the requirements of the convention, the COVAW project will provide technical assistance to the government of Ukraine to identify areas for prioritisation to deepen needed measures.

Finalisation of project activities will take place during the project inception period in January and February 2021. The project will be implemented until December 2022, contributing to the creation of an efficient system of protection of victims of violence against women and domestic violence in Ukraine.

Follow updates on the COVAW project on the website and Facebook page of the Council of Europe office in Kyiv as well as on the Council of Europe Gender Equality Division website.

Kyiv 11/02/2021
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