333 NGOs from 9 Member States of the Council of Europe ask about amendments to the Istanbul Convention

20 March 2018, 20:19 | Religion and society | 0 |   | Code for Blog |  | 

More than three hundred non-governmental organizations from nine European countries, including Ukraine, are initiating amendments to the Istanbul Convention in order to eliminate the gender ideology that is preventing its ratification.

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We, the undersigned 333 NGOs from 9 Member States of the Council of Europe welcome the timely statement by Mrs. Bridget O’Loughlin, Executive Secretary of the Istanbul Convention, of 7 March 2018, in which she noted the need to “clear away the misconceptions regarding the Istanbul Convention”. The undersigned NGOs would like to support this effort with further clarifications and concrete recommendations.

In terms of clarifications, the provisions and obligations in the Istanbul Convention contradict Mrs. O’Loughlin’s claim that the Istanbul Convention, as a binding international treaty, does not force “gender ideology” and does not include educational obligations regarding sexual orientation.

Indeed, Article 3 c) of the Istanbul Convention advances a definition of gender as a social construct, which differs from the agreed definition of “gender equality” in EU Treaties, i.e. equality between women and men (Article 2 of the TEU and Article 8 TFEU). Contrary to Mrs. O’Loughlin’s assessment of the scope of the Istanbul Convention, this covers and contains obligations regarding gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation. Such obligations are evident from Article 4 of the Istanbul Convention and the European Commission’s interpretation of “gender-based violence” in the Istanbul Convention.

The European Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, Ms. Vera Jourova, stated in response to a parliamentary question that ”gender-based violence is violence that is directed against a person of that person’s gender, gender identity or gender expression.” This view has been confirmed by the European Commission Network of legal experts in gender equality and non-discrimination.

This becomes particularly sensitive in the area of education, which is included in the Istanbul Convention. Teaching materials would need to reflect this understanding of gender as including gender identity and gender expression, contrary to the statement of the Executive Secretary of the Istanbul Convention.

Given the lack of clarity in the scope of the Istanbul Convention, and the contradictions caused by the non-consensual definitions used in the Istanbul Convention, we recommend the following:

1) Initiate the revision of the Convention in order to replace gender and related concepts with “equality between women and men”; and

2) Enable States to provide reservations on the controversial and ideological parts of the Convention. This requires the amendment of Article 78.

We believe that clearing away the misconceptions by amending the Convention with regards to these two points would enable Council of Europe Member States to fully focus on the implementation of mechanisms that do indeed protect women and girls from violence

It is noteworthy that on Wednesday, March 21, the Verkhovna Rada Committee on European Integration planned to reconsider Bill № 0119 on the ratification of the Istanbul Convention, on which the Churches and the family-centered public organizations of Ukraine have repeatedly expressed their objections.

Instead, in order to effectively counteract domestic violence, the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations urged the Verkhovna Rada, instead of ratifying the Istanbul Convention, to facilitate the speedy implementation of the provisions of the recently adopted Law No. 2229-VIII of Ukraine on Prevention and Combating of Domestic Violence, dated 07.12.2017, and the Law of Ukraine "On Enactment amendments to the Criminal and Criminal Procedural Codes of Ukraine in order to implement the provisions of the Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention of Violence against Women and Home its violence and combating these phenomena »number» 2227-VIII of 12.06.2017 year.

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    • Kir | 19 September 2018, 15:32

      Можливо вже так і зробив? Бо реакції нема ніякої...

    • velovs@ukr.net | 18 September 2018, 13:18

      Отут, за наведеним нижче посиланням, представлена ПЕРЕКОНЛИВА й НЕСПРОСТОВНА інфа, зокрема, про ЦЕРКОВНУ та іншу МЕЦЕНАТСЬКУ дільність гетьмана Івана МАЗЕПИ. В т. ч. про 28 православних церков і

    • Ortox | 18 September 2018, 12:23

      Погано історію знає Геча, одна з підстав анафеми, руйнування православних храмів і вбивство українців шведами (європейцями) яким він продався

    • lerer10225@com.ua | 18 September 2018, 12:21

      Отак ото, не має нічого таємного, яке б не стало через деякий час явним... Правда - вона є Божою і завжди восторжествує..

    • Стефан | 17 September 2018, 22:43

      Ко времени предоставления Томоса необходимо обеспечить единодушие, единомыслие в Синоде Украинской Поместной Православной Церкви.

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