29th Council of Europe Conference of Ministers of Justice
Breaking the silence -
United against domestic violence
17-19 June 2009
The Ministers of Justice of the member states of the Council of Europe met in Tromsø , Norway, on 17-19 June 2009, to discuss the topic "Breaking the silence - United against domestic violence".
Domestic violence is shrouded in secrecy. Its victims rarely reveal the fear, isolation and trauma in which they live. The perpetrators deny it takes place at all. It is as if it does not exist. Domestic violence has long been met with public and political silence. It is barely visible in the legal system and seldom recognised as a serious crime and violation of fundamental human rights.
The scene of domestic violence is behind closed doors. It mostly involves intimate partners and former partners, and also takes place within same sex relationships. The victims of domestic violence are usually, but not exclusively, women. Men can be affected as well as children who are often both witnesses of violence between adults and victims of such violence. The increase in inter-generational violence is also becoming a matter of concern in our societies.
The Ministers of Justice discussed ways to combat domestic violence by identifying the problems and developing and promoting a common approach to breaking the silence, and supporting and empowering the victims. The 29th Council of Europe Conference of Ministers of Justice opened a forum for exchange of views on these issues and identify areas where further efforts are needed to tackle this problem in Europe.
Chairs of Steering Committees
- Steering Committee for Human Rights (CDDH) [French]
- European Committee on Legal Co-operation (CDCJ)
- European Committee on Crime Problems (CDPC)
- Monaco [French]
- Netherlands on Prelininary Draft Resolution No.3
- Slovak Republic [French]
- Switzerland [German]
- United Kingdom
- Mr Aleš ZALAR, Minister of Justice of Slovenia on behalf of the Slovenian Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe
- The Congress - Mr Krug
- The Parliamentary Assembly - Ms Häag
- European Co-ordination Forum for the CoE Disability Action Plan 2006-2015 (CAPAH)- M. Bechina
- United Nations
- “Janusz Korczak Lecture” on “Children versus prisons: what can we do better ?” by Maud de Boer-Buquicchio, Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe
Signatures or Ratifications of the Treaties
- European Convention on the Exercise of Children's Rights (ETS No. 160)
- Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (CETS No. 197)
- Council of Europe Convention on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse (CETS No. 201)
- European Convention on the Adoption of Children (Revised) (CETS No. 202)
- Council of Europe Convention on Access to Official Documents
- Breaking the silence against domestic violence (Report presented by the Minister of Justice of Norway)
- Follow-up to resolutions adopted at previous Conferences of European Ministers of Justice [French] (Report presented by the Secretary General of the Council of Europe)
- Breaking the Silence – Together Against Domestic Violence (Report presented by the Delegation of the Ministry of Justice and Citizens’ Liberties of Romania)
- Breaking the silence against domestic violence [French] (Report by the Swiss Ministry of Justice)
- Breaking the silence against domestic violence (Report by the Minister of Justice of the Republic of Slovenia)
- Breaking the silence - united against domestic violence (Report by the Ministry of Justice of Portugal)
Chamber judgment - Opuz case (09/06/09)
The Council of Europe and the Rule of Law - an overview
Final Activity Report
Position Paper by Mr Robert Bechina (Austria), European Co-ordination Forum for the Council of Europe Disability Action Plan 2006-2015 (CAHPAH)
Ukraine: National campaign 'Stop Violence'