YEREVAN—After the Armenian National Assembly passed a law against domestic violence last month, Armenia, on Thursday, signed the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence, commonly referred to as the Istanbul Convention, for the city in which it was approved.
Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Gabriella Battaini-Dragoni and Ambassador Paruyr Hovhannisyan, Permanent Representative of Armenia to the Council of Europe, signed the agreement.
Armenia became the 45th member State of the Council of Europe to sign the Convention. Out of the 47 member states, only Azerbaijan and Russia have not signed the document.
“It’s impossible to exaggerate the role of women in the Armenian society and particularly within the family structure. Armenia supports the strengthening of the protection of the rights of women and of course, everyone subjected to domestic violence and the Councul of Europe policy aimed at eliminating domestic violence. We are convinced that this convention will become an important tool to further enrich Armenia’s efforts to protect human rightsm,” Hovhannisyan said after the signing of the document.
Rights advocates and groups pursuing the domestic violence law in Armenia had urged the government to sign the Convention.
This Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence protects women against all forms of violence against them.
It obliges states to prevent, prosecute and eliminate violence against women and domestic violence.
The Convention also establishes a specific monitoring mechanism (“GREVIO”) in order to ensure effective implementation of its provisions by the states parties.
To assist legal professionals in Armenia in applying the national legislation in the area in line with the European standards, the Council of Europe has launched in the end of December 2017 in Armenia the first training course for legal professionals on violence against women. The course was launched one day after the Armenian National Assembly adopted the first law aimed at combating domestic violence.