07/12/2012 - Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council (EPSCO)
Combating gender-based violence
On 6 December, the Council adopted conclusions on combating violence against women and the provision of support services for victims of domestic violence. "We underscored the need to forge ahead with more targeted actions," stated Ms Sotiroula Charalambous, the Cyprus minister presiding over the meeting.
© Viktor Kuryan - Fotolia
The Council stressed that violence against women is to be condemned as violating human rights and cannot be justified by tradition or religion. The conclusions also point out that such violence "affects society as a whole and it constitutes an obstacle to women's active participation in society".
It is stressed that all forms of violence against women should be condemned as a violation of women's full enjoyment of human rights and that combating and eliminating such violence requires coordinated policies at all relevant levels and a comprehensive approach.
"Dignity, integrity and an end to gender-based violence" is a priority area of the Commission's strategy for equality between women and men. This priority was endorsed by the Council, including in the European Pact for Gender Equality (2011-2020).