On Friday, 4 June 2021, the Latvian Constitutional Court adopted a judgement finding that the provisions of the Istanbul Convention, namely its Articles 3(c), Article 4(3) and Article 12(1), comply with the Latvian constitution. The Constitutional Court found, inter alia, that the scope of the Istanbul Convention only includes the elimination of violence against women and domestic violence, and that it does not impose the acceptance or introduction of any specific form of marriage or family. Moreover, it adds that gender-based violence is present in Latvia and mostly affects women, therefore, the implementation of special measures in respect of women is necessary and is aimed at achieving effective equality between men and women.
The Istanbul Convention was signed by Latvia in 2016 but has yet to be ratified by the Parliament. Twenty-one members of the parliament used the possibility, as provided for by the law, to turn to the Constitutional Court with a request to assess the compliance of the Istanbul Convention with the Constitution of the Republic of Latvia.
A press release is available in English here.