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Parliamentary questions
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29 October 2021
Question for written answer  E-004946/2021
to the Commission
Rule 138
Samira Rafaela (Renew)
 Answer in writing 
 Subject: Marital captivity

A woman has the right to marry, divorce and remarry as enshrined in Articles 8 and 12 of the European Convention on Human Rights, Article 16 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and Article 37 of the Istanbul Convention.

Marital captivity – when someone is kept against their will in a marriage, religious or otherwise, because they are unable to obtain a dissolution of the marriage – is a violation of these rights.

The consequences for women, such as exclusion, stigmatisation and prosecution, heavily impact their life. It is therefore time that marital captivity is recognised as a form of gender-based violence.

President von der Leyen reaffirmed in her State of the Union address that a law to combat violence against women, from prevention to protection, and including effective prosecution, will be proposed by the end of 2021.

1. Is the Commission aware of the impact that marital captivity has on women?

2. What efforts has it made to recognise and address the impact of marital captivity on women?

3. How is it planning to include marital captivity in its upcoming legislative proposal on gender-based violence?

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