Write to your authorities, urging to use the Istanbul Convention!

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  1. letter nfa for signing and ratification Istanbul Convention 2013
  2. letter nfa for ratification Istanbul Convention 2013
  3. letter nfa for implementation Istanbul Convention

The UWE Board would like to draw your attention to a very important theme. From 2008 onwards our Vice President Marie José Jonczy has been involved in the negotiation of the Istanbul Convention of the Council of Europe, being a member of the delegation of the board of the European Women’s Lobby to which she belongs as UWE representative.  Besides the huge number of women and girls that are subject to violence in this world, it is still a big taboo amongst both men and women that also high educated women are subject to violence against them. A large group of University Women of Europe are now working on a project coordinated by Finland and Germany which is looking into this matter and will ask for your cooperation soon https://uweboard.wordpress.com/european-project-domestic-violence-met-by-educated-women/ .

The Istanbul Convention is not only to combat violence  but also to prevent it and provides the necessary remedies to victims. The Convention took a long time to draft and was difficult to negotiate as some delegations wished to have a convention against violence in general which would reduce the strength of the convention for women. The scope  of the first article of the convention is to combat and  prevent violence against women and a second paragraph could extend the scope to all violence.  The delegation spoke for hours to get the point across that the strength of the convention is to be found in the focus on combating and preventing violence against women and girls. It also includes no marriage exemption for rape and the implementation and development of specialist services to support women with legal assistance and free legal aid. The key to combating violence against women is not crime control. It is making sure that women and men are equal partners, have the same rights and responsibilities, the same opportunities and that their contribution to society is equally valued and respected. An important element is to make the lack of consent an constitutive element of crime. More info in different languages can be found on : http://www.coe.int/t/dghl/standardsetting/convention-violence/brochures_en.asp.

The Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence was adopted by the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers on 7 April 2011. It opened for signature on 11 May 2011 on the occasion of the 121st Session of the Committee of Ministers in Istanbul. It will enter into force following 10 ratifications. Unfortunately now in November 2013  the Istanbul Convention is only signed and ratified by six countries. Time for action!

The Council of Europe and the European Women’s Lobby have joined forces in this project to promote the Istanbul Convention as a concrete tool for change to eradicate all forms of male violence against women and specifically rape.  Under the common slogan “Act against rape! Use the Istanbul Convention!”, a series of public events will take place in 33 countries all over Europe during the 16 days of activism against violence against women between 25 November and 10 December.

We have written three possible letters: to ask for signing and ratification, to ask for ratification and to emphasize the necessity to implement the Istanbul convention. Please make sure to check the status of the signing and ratifying on the convention on http://conventions.coe.int/Treaty/Commun/ChercheSig.asp?NT=210&CM=1&DF=&CL=ENG

We ask you to support the European action against rape and the use of the Istanbul Convention. The draft letters which are enclosed can serve as a model to be send to your respective authorities. Please make it known to the EWL and the UWE Board that you have taken action in favor of the protection of women and support a Europe free from violence for women and girls.

UWE Vice President, Mr. Marie José Jonczy

UWE President. Drs. Edith Lommerse MMO

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5 thoughts on “Write to your authorities, urging to use the Istanbul Convention!

    Nezihe Bilhan said:
    November 25, 2013 at 6:17 am

    Dear Edith,I have attached, our letter to UWE dated october 19,2012,with the subject,”Can UWE members lobby for it”. We havegiven this letter also to the participants of Helsinki meeting. We hope this time members of UWE will use this opportunity to urgetheir goverments to ratify Istanbul Convention. Looking forward for future cooperations, Warm Greetings,Nezihe

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    Date: Fri, 22 Nov 2013 14:16:22 +0000
    To: mnbilhan@hotmail.com

      President University Women of EUROPE said:
      November 25, 2013 at 11:29 am

      I fully agree, we have mentioned the topic a few times on posterous and the action plan. Now I will send it also as an email hoping it will reach members who are willing to send the letter to their authorities. I also have good news on the friendship project.. The Amsterdam VVAo is interested in organizing a fundraising while I do a lecture on UWE and my work in Afghanistan. They also want to strengthen contacts with a Turkish Women Group in Amsterdam! No large steps but it is a beginning!

      Met vriendelijke groet,

      Edith

    Gerda Leushuis said:
    December 1, 2013 at 11:07 am

    HELLO, HELLO, wakeup dear UWE friends …….

    It’s in the INTEREST OF ALL WOMEN AND GIRLS….THEREFORE: ….It’s not only NFA’s that should take action. Also we, the individual women in Europe/members of UWE should send a letter to our gouvernments/ministries/political parties…..

    It would be helpful if we could have a model-letter for this individual action.
    Thanks in advance.

    Gerda Leushuis.

      President University Women of EUROPE said:
      December 1, 2013 at 11:45 am

      Well I would use the same letter but deleting , also individuals are University women of Europe!! Just leave out the name of the NFA:)

    Gerda Leushuis said:
    December 1, 2013 at 11:24 am

    Which contries/governments already signed, resp. ratified, resp. implemented the Istanbul Convention? Who can let us know?

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