BERK – The Istanbul Agreement is now in force

The Istanbul Agreement is now in forceThe Istanbul Agreement was signed in May 2011 and ratified on Nov. 29, 2011 by Turkey.

Turkey was one of the first signatories to the Council of Europe (COE)onvention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence, known as the Istanbul Agreement. Looking at the time elapsed from the signing date of the agreement and the ratification by the other signatory countries, I can say that women in other signatory countries are happier than women in Turkey.

the other signatories finally ratified the agreement and it came into force as of Aug. 1 2014.

I must admit that Turkey is the country that needs this agreement most, as 139 women were killed in the first six months of 2014, according to data from the We Will End Murders of Women Platform The signing and ratification of the agreement is a great success for Family and Social Policy Minister Fatma Iahin and her team, and it is also a big step towards stopping violence. However, it is not enough.

The implementation of the Istanbul Agreement was a priority for Turkey.Article 75 of the agreement reads as follows:andldquoSignature and entry into force:1.

This Convention shall be open for signature by the member States of the Council of Europe, the non-member States which have participated in its elaboration and the European Union.2 This Convention is subject to ratification, acceptance or approval.

Instruments of ratification, acceptance or approval shall be deposited with the Secretary General of the Council of Europe.3 This Convention shall enter into force on the first day of the month following the expiration of a period of three months after the date on which 10 signatories, including at least eight member States of the Council of Europe, have expressed their consent to be bound by the Convention in accordance with the provisions of paragraph two.

4 In respect of any State referred to in paragraph 1 or the European Union, which subsequently expresses its consent to be bound by it, the Convention shall enter into force on the first day of the month following the expiration of a period of three months after the date of the deposit of its instrument of ratification, acceptance or approval.andrdquoThe convention requires signatories to criminalize the practices of forced marriage, female genital mutilation, forced abortion and sterilization, sexual harassment and stalking.

It also stipulates that the parties to the convention take the necessary legislative and other measures to combat honor killings, which usually refers to the killing of women by family members for andldquostaining the family honorandrdquo Turkish culture is very focused on family honor, but nothing can make a killing justified in this sense. Femicide is a major problem in Turkey, and the regulations following the agreement will be very helpful on this.

Now the government should form a task force and work on the criminal and civil approaches to the matter to make it visible and effective in Turkey.NOTE: Berk ektir is a Turkish lawyer available to answer questions on the legal aspects of living and doing business in Turkey.

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SOURCE: Today’s Zaman