Council of Europe, Committee of Ministers, 1405th meeting of the Ministers' Deputies. Statement delivered by Ambassador Ragnhildur Arnljótsdóttir.
Allow me to join others in welcoming and congratulating you on assuming the chairmanship. Let me also, dear Michele, congratulate you on the Italian National day today - and welcome our colleague from Lithuania and thank Aushrine for excellent cooperation.
Madam Naudi, thank you for your update and information provided, my delegation is very appreciative of the important work GREVIO undertakes. We are looking forward to engaging more on the draft General Recommendation on the Digital Dimension of Violence against Women, a very important topic in today’s world that concerns us all.
Let me also welcome your words - on the importance of the landmark Council of Europe Convention - on preventing and combating violence against women - and domestic violence. Together with CEDAW - it provides a unique legal framework to protect the rights of women in Europe. Its implementation has improved legislation - practices - support services - training of professionals and raised awareness - among other benefits.
We recognize that we must continue to build on this legal framework - to build policies to end all forms of gender-based and sexual violence - and ensure that those policies protect all women from violence – harassment and discrimination - taking into account an intersectional approach.
The Icelandic Government has introduced new plans and legislations aiming to end sexual and gender-based violence - and sexual harassment. - Cross-sectoral preventive policies play a key role there - with measures to increase education within the school system at all levels, - and raise awareness and understanding in society and among professionals. The increase in online gender-based violence has already been met by legislative changes on violations on sexual and privacy violations in the General Penal Code.
In connection to Iceland‘s presidency from November 2022 - we will be running seminars both here in Strasbourg and in Iceland on the impact of the convention - and on policy reforms within member states - of criminal laws to support access to justice for women victims of gender-based violence and sexual violence.
Madam Naudi, let me finally congratulate you – chair - as well as the Committee of the Parties to the Convention, under the leadership of Nina Nordström - and the Secretary General and the Secretariat - on the approach taken to the 10th anniversary and the efforts to highlight the positive and transformative power the Convention carries.
The current situation can after all show us how we can together strengthen the visibility of the Council - and its positive influence towards individuals - which is of course our most important task every single day. By demonstrating the potential of the Convention for real change we build a stronger foundation - for our future work based on the Convention - to combat gender-based violence.
Thank you chair