Key messages

Key Messages EWL Campaign

The European Women’s Lobby calls for a Directive on violence against women and domestic violence that includes back a definition on rape based on consent. Read our priorities here

The proposal of the Council and the position of several EU Member states to block to delete article 5, establishing a harmonised approach to the crime of rape- are outrageous and non admissible to women’s organisations.

Rape must be made a criminal offence under the Directive. Article 5 must be put back in the final text.

Rape must be an offence 2

Women’s rights are not negotiable. Every women and girl, regardless of where they live in Europe are at risk of being raped and deserve the same level of rights and protection.

Rape is one of the most pervasive and brutal forms of violence against women and girls systematically used to silence women across Europe. According to the UN, rape and sexual violence constitute "war crimes, crimes against humanity or a constitutive act with respect to genocide.

There are solid legal basis to provide a harmonised definition of rape at EU level. Letter from reputed lawyers here.

There is an urgent need to combat rape on a common basis, which is clearly not the case at the moment as many different approaches to the crime coexist. Women are not adequately protected across the EU.

Legislations in 15 Member States do not offer adequate protection to women victims.

The affirmative approach “Only yes means yes” approach is a must. It has proven to work better to protect and ensure access to justice and reparation. More info here.

“Sex without freely given consent is not sex; it’s rape; and It should be considered a crime, no matter where it happens”. Testimonies from survivors here.

A common EU approach to the crime of rape is urgently needed to provide adequate protection to victims no matter where they are in the Union.

EU action on this matter will bring tremendous added value.

Women in the EU are watching and expecting you to take action.

Every woman deserves a life without fear and violence. Join our fight for a stronger Directive!
Sign our petition.

Latest video

EWL event "Progress towards a Europe free from all forms of male violence" to mark the 10th aniversary of the Istanbul Convention, 12 May 2021.

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