Press releases

Women’s NGOs demand European action to end male violence against women

On the International Day on the eradication of violence against women, women’s NGOs call for a strong Council of Europe (CoE) Convention on combating male violence against women. On 1-3 December, delegates from the 47 CoE countries will meet in Strasbourg to discuss the first draft of a new CoE convention aiming at preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence. The European Women’s Lobby (EWL) warmly welcomes this text, that proves a strong political will to address and eradicate male violence against women at European level, and will closely monitor the development of the Convention.

In Europe, 45% of all women have been subjected to and suffered from different forms of men’s violence. One in 5 women has been subjected to domestic violence, in her own home. More than one tenth of all women have suffered sexual violence as defined in its most narrow sense. When combined with discrimination based on race, age, sexual orientation, or religion (amongst others), figures get even higher.

EWL President Brigitte Triems declares: “The EWL welcomes the Council of Europe’s decision to focus on male violence against women, therefore bringing into light the social dimension of violent acts perpetrated by men against women and supported by social norms and stereotypes.” She adds: “We think it is crucial that the convention ensures that violence against women is defined from a gender analysis of the structural inequalities women face in our societies and which allow for the tolerance of male violence against women and men’s control over women’s bodies and sexuality.”

Therefore, the EWL and its 2500 member associations call on this CoE meeting to be the momentum for a common commitment to support and reinforce the draft convention. “The convention should include all forms of male violence against women, as all forms of men’s violence against women violate women’s human rights and pose an obstacle to the achievement of gender equality”, declares Brigitte Triems. “The EWL, as the largest umbrella organization of women’s associations in the EU, will closely follow and monitor the activities of the CoE and work with its members and other European and international NGOs to ensure that the current draft convention retains its high standards and indeed is strengthened so as to become an essential legally-binding international instrument on the defense and the promotion of women’s human rights.”

Latest video

EWL event "Progress towards a Europe free from all forms of male violence" to mark the 10th aniversary of the Istanbul Convention, 12 May 2021.

Facebook Feed

Get Involved