On the occasion of the publication of GREVIO’s 2nd Activity Report today and ahead of the tenth anniversary of the Istanbul Convention’s opening for signature in May, Marceline Naudi, President of GREVIO, calls for a wider use of this tool to offer women and girls more protection from violence, not less.
Recalling that the Istanbul Convention is a treaty that places a comprehensive set of obligations on state parties to keep women safe from gender-based violence and to ensure perpetrators are held accountable, the GREVIO President stressed its ambitious and far-reaching nature. “It is ambition that helps us achieve our goals, not fear. But in order to achieve our goals, we need to believe in them, collectively. It is with the women and girls in Turkey, the rest of Europe and beyond in mind that I stress the need to work towards our common goal of preventing and combating the many forms of violence they experience every day. This is best done on the basis of legally binding standards that ensure the highest level of protection and a common space of zero tolerance towards violence against women.”
As the 2nd General Report on GREVIO’s Activities explains, the implementation of the Istanbul Convention and GREVIO’s monitoring work has garnered strong support and brought significant progress in the fight against violence against women among states parties. At the same time, strong opposition to basic premises of the Istanbul Convention persists in some member states of the Council of Europe. Much of this opposition is based on false assumptions or deliberate misinterpretations of the Istanbul Convention about its possible legal and social implications. GREVIO’s approach has been to demonstrate in concrete terms, through its monitoring work and constant dialogue with state and non-state authorities, how the convention prevents violence against women, increases victims’ protection, enhances the prosecution of perpetrators and, ultimately, saves victims’ lives. It is through dialogue and discussion that the purposes and the added value of the convention can best be underscored.