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Poland yet to ratify violence against women convention

PR dla Zagranicy
Peter Gentle 16.10.2014 16:08
  • report by Alicja Baczynska
Parliament put Poland ratifying a Council of Europe convention on domestic violence on the back burner last week after parliamentary committees for foreign affairs and human rights dropped the item from their agenda.

photo - Glow Images/East News

The MPs, who were to review amendments to the Convention on Combating and Preventing Violence Against Women - which Poland signed in 2012 but has yet to ratify in parliament - after a second reading, but had their joint session called off without setting an alternative date, thwarting plans for a parliamentary ahead of local elections due mid-November.

In October, the Family Affairs Council of the Polish bishops’ conference issued a statement opposing MPs ratifying the convention, claiming it was an attempt at social engineering.

“This convention is not directed at countering violence, as its title suggests, but at imposing an ideological cultural revolution. It seeks to redefine sex as an alterable social phenomenon, rather than a biological one, and to blame the foundational communities of marriage and family for all violence,” said the Polish bishops.

Urszula Nowakowska, head of the Women's Right Center in Warsaw, has voiced concern and disappointment that the convention has taken so long to get through parliament.

“We need very special provisions to effectively protect women against all forms of violence and Polish law, so far, does not provide such protection,” Nowakowska says. (pg)

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