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Parliamentary questions
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18 July 2016
Question for written answer E-005912-16
to the Commission
Rule 130
Beatrix von Storch (EFDD)

 Subject:  Istanbul Convention: problem with definitions
 Answer in writing 

The Commission has proposed EU accession to the international Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence (the Istanbul Convention).

The Istanbul Convention sets a blatantly double standard by stating that violence against men is not gender-based violence. Moreover, it raises many problems, in particular the problem of definitions.

The Convention provides, in Article 4.3, as grounds for non-discrimination ‘sex, gender, […] sexual orientation, gender identity[…]’. No such list exists in any legally binding treaty within the United Nations System or the EU acquis communautaire. Together with the social‐construct definitions of ‘gender’, ‘sexual orientation’ and ‘gender identity’, such weak definitions would solidify a greater ideological platform declaring subjective attractions to be universal human rights, a concept which has not been accepted by the UN Member States or in the EU acquis communautaire. Moreover, the terms ‘sexual orientation’ and ‘gender identity’ have not been defined in a legally binding UN document or within the EU acquis communautaire.

Given that the Commission has proposed EU accession to the Istanbul Convention, how does it intend to handle the legal uncertainties with regard to the acquis communautaire?

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