Women’s rights activists in Morocco, Tunisia, and 126 other countries launch global treaty to end violence against women and girls After eight years of development, the draft treaty is finally ready to be finalized and ratified by UN member states (November 16, 2021) - Today, a week before the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence is launched by UN-Women, women’s rights activists from 128 countries, including Morocco and Tunisia, launches the dissemination of the first draft of the global treaty to end violence against women and girls, after eight years of intensive research and consultation with experts. The treaty will be deposited with the member states of the United Nations, which are encouraged to finalize and ratify this important international convention. “We have international anti-tobacco, anti-mine and anti-torture treaties,” said Marina Pisklakova-Parker, one of the co-founders of the Every Woman Treaty, who launched the first green line for domestic violence, and advocates for legal reforms in Russia. “We need a global treaty to protect women and girls from violence," she says.
According to the World Health Organization, violence against women "remains woefully pervasive. One in three women in the world is a victim of violence, young women remain among the most at risk. UN-Women calls this phenomenon the "hidden pandemic" that has been unleashed since the Covid-19 epidemic. 57% of women in Morocco and 48% in Tunisia report having suffered at least one form of gender-based violence. "This draft global treaty will be the first to take the holistic ’whole hand’ approach," said Saida Kouzzi, founding partner of MRA Mobilising for Rights Associates in Rabat, an international organization in the Maghreb that is part of the Global Task Force. and the Every Woman Treaty Committee of Experts. “It combines laws, training for public actors, education, a budget, and data. " The President of Nigeria, the Secretary-General of the Organization of American States, the former Minister of Women’s Affairs of Afghanistan, and four Nobel Laureates have already spoken out in favor of the global treaty. “Violence against women and girls is preventable,” said Judge Najla Ayoubi, another co-founder of the Every Woman Treaty. “Laws and policies work”. For example, countries with laws on domestic violence have 32% lower female mortality. The rate of intimate partner violence in eight communities in Uganda fell by 52% after violence prevention training. In the United States, fifteen years after the passage of the violence against women law, intimate partner violence has fallen by 53%.
The first draft of the global treaty to end violence against women and girls was established in consultation not only with frontline activists but also with survivors, medical experts, academics, lawyers’ rights, legal scholars, diplomats and policymakers. It is considered a "first draft" because it is ultimately the UN member states who will have to ratify and shape it into its final version. “We have done a lot of hard work to create this first viable project. We hope this will start the negotiations, ”said Lisa Shannon, CEO of Every Woman Treaty. According to Mounira Balgouthi, in charge of Marsadnissa Tunisia, “This is not about one country telling another what to do. These are the nations coming together to end violence against women and girls once and for all. " Current international law does not provide sufficient protection. At present, there are regional treaties, such as the Convention of Belém do Pará in Latin America, the Maputo Protocol in Africa, and the Istanbul Convention in Europe, which have all proven to be effective, but they sideline three-quarters of the world’s population. In addition, efforts to amend CEDAW (the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women) so that it is interpreted in the light of violence, have not been crowned with success. success. A global treaty will provide essential resources and training to end violence against women and girls.
• Clarify standards to prevent, protect, eliminate and condemn violence against women and girls; • Provide a specific reporting framework based on metrics; • Establish an international control body; • Require training and accountability of police, judges and health professionals; • Increase funding for services provided to survivors such as women’s shelters, hotlines and legal aid; and • Prioritize awareness raising over violence prevention. Interviews with women’s rights activists around the world are available on this first draft treaty.
Attached is the full project and the three-page summary.
This platform is part of the Axis 1 "Strengthening the capacities of equality actors" of the Priority Solidarity Fund "Women for the future in the Mediterranean" funded by the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs and led by the European Institute of the Mediterranean, in the framework of the project “Developing Women's Empowerment” labelled by the Union for the Mediterranean.