Europe: Bulgaria and Slovakia Reject Treaty on Violence against Women
Sunday, February 25, 2018 1:00 PM

The Prime Ministers of Bulgaria and Slovakia have said they will not support ratification of the Council of Europe’s Convention on preventing and combatting violence against women and domestic violence (Istanbul Convention). Both countries have signed the treaty, but opposition to ratification has grown among those who believe the Convention would undermine traditional gender roles. 

The Istanbul Convention, named for its adoption in Istanbul, Turkey in 2011, is Europe's first comprehensive treaty designed to combat all forms of violence against women, including stalking, sexual harassment, rape, domestic violence, forced marriage and female genital mutilation. It requires states to strengthen their efforts in four primary areas: protection of victims, prevention of violence, prosecution of perpetrators, and provision of victim services, such as shelters and medical care.  Twenty-eight countries have ratified the Convention, which entered into force in August of 2014.

Compiled from: Gotev, Georgi, After Bulgaria, Slovakia too fails to ratify the Istanbul Convention, Euractiv (February 23, 2018).