Launch of the EuroMed Rights campaign #STOPViolenceAgainstWomen

Campaign, Press Release, Women’s rights and gender justice

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Brussels/Copenhagen/Paris/Tunis: This Friday 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, EuroMed Rights is launching a campaign to fight violence against women.

In the 21st century, violence against women remains one of the most intolerable scourges of our humanity, and one of the most violent violations of human rights. It affects the countries of the North and the countries of the South, as well as the private sphere and public sphere, in equal measures. This is why EuroMed Rights wishes to sound the alarm and conduct actions on this violence, through five target countries*: Cyprus, France, Morocco, Tunisia and Turkey.

The statistics collected by the network’s member organisations speak volumes. In France, a woman dies at her spouse’s hands every three days. In Morocco, six out of every ten women are victims of domestic violence, but only 3% of these women dare to report the abuse. In Cyprus, one out of every five women has suffered sexual or physical violence. 78% of women in Tunisia have been harassed and molested in a public space. Finally, the worst of the violence, murder; over 1,400 feminicides have taken place in Turkey over the past 5 years.

At fault are the lack of services available to victims, widespread impunity and lack of training and awareness-raising among professionals in the relevant sectors, including the police and the judicial system.

On 11 May 2011, a convention of the Council of Europe specifically targeting violence against women and domestic violence came into existence; the Istanbul Convention. This innovative instrument puts forward a comprehensive approach based on 4 pillars: Prevention, Protection, Legal Proceedings and Integrated Policies against gender-based violence.

The Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence is open to ratification by non-member countries of the Council of Europe. Together with its members and partner NGOs, EuroMed Rights, which fights for women’s rights in the Euro-Mediterranean countries, is calling on all countries who have not yet done so to sign and ratify the Istanbul Convention, or to align their national legislation with the Convention’s provisions, and for countries that have already ratified the Convention to ensure the proper implementation of the provisions of law.

In order to make a difference for women in the region and to make equality a central concern of our societies, say “No to violence against women“.

For more information, visit our campaign page.

* These five countries were targeted to represent the North and South of the Mediterranean and because of the desire of EuroMed Rights members to focus on the issue of violence against women by using the Convention as an instrument.