The European Parliament asked, this Thursday, that Europe equips itself with common legal bases to act against violence and discrimination based on gender, suffered by women or homosexual and transgender people.
In a legislative initiative text, MEPs demanded by 427 votes in favor (119 against, 140 abstentions) “that online and offline gender-based violence be treated as a + particularly serious crime with a cross-border dimension +” .
A new area of crime
The Council, representing the Twenty-Seven Member States, can with the approval of Parliament identify new areas of crime requiring action on common bases, as already applies to trafficking in human beings or drugs, to computer crime and terrorism.
This definition as a new area of crime, the most extreme form of which would be femicide, “would serve as the legal basis for a European directive focused on victims”, based on the standards of the Istanbul Convention, the first international treaty. on the subject, contested in conservative countries like Poland, explains the European Parliament.
Legal proceedings and protection of women
The text voted in Strasbourg also underlines that “reproductive coercion and the refusal of safe and legal care in the event of abortion also constitute a form of violence based on gender”. Within the EU, abortion is only allowed under very restrictive conditions in Poland and Cyprus and remains illegal in Malta.
In her annual State of the Union address on Wednesday, the President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen promised by the end of the year to propose a law to combat violence against women, allowing effective prosecution and preventive and protective measures. In the European Union, a third of women have suffered physical or sexual violence and around 50 die each week as a result of domestic violence, according to data communicated by the European Parliament.