Religious figures convince MP that ratification of the Istanbul Convention is inexpedient

01.06.2021, 13:19
Religious figures convince MP that ratification of the Istanbul Convention is inexpedient - фото 1
Representatives of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations explained to the parliamentarians the risks and ideological bias of the Istanbul Convention, which make it impossible to ratify it. The discussion on this issue occurred during a regular meeting of the AUCCRO with the inter-factional deputy association "Values. Dignity. Family", which took place on May 31, 2021, in Kyiv.

This is reported by the official website AUCCRO.

The Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence, known as the Istanbul Convention, was signed in 2011. However, not all countries agreed to ratify it, in particular Ukraine, Great Britain, Lithuania, Latvia, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Moldova, Liechtenstein, Bulgaria and others. At the same time, Turkey this year announced its denunciation of ratification and withdrew from the parties to this convention.

Representative of the Сhairman of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches Fr. Oleksa Petriv explained the distrust of the Istanbul Convention by saying that it carries an ideological superstructure. According to him, this is a direct violation of Article 15 of the Constitution of Ukraine, according to which “no ideology can be recognized by the state as mandatory.”

Senior bishop of the Ukrainian Church of evangelical Christians Mykhailo Panochko noted that through the use of such concepts as “gender”, “sexual orientation” and “gender identity”, and the requirements for teaching children in schools “non-stereotypical gender roles” (Article 14 of the convention), a gender ideology is actually imposed on Ukrainian society. This ideology involves replacing the gender identification of women and men with gender when a person is encouraged to choose their own gender at any time-female or male, or another of more than 50 fictional configurations.

According to the Council of Churches, the greatest risk of the Istanbul Convention is threats to the security of Ukraine associated with the introduction of a gender ideology, which in fact is far from a practical solution to the problems of equal rights of women and men. Therefore, religious figures consistently advocate for improving the national legislation of Ukraine on countering domestic violence, as do other countries that have refused to ratify the Istanbul Convention.

As an example, with the support of the AUCCRO, two laws were adopted in 2017: "on preventing and countering domestic violence" and "on amendments to the criminal and criminal procedure codes of Ukraine in order to implement the provisions of the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence".

Responding to the arguments of the AUCCRO, First Deputy Chairman of the parliamentary faction of the Servant of the People Party Oleksandr Kornienko noted that there is no question of ratification of the Istanbul Convention before any specific date. He agreed that this issue is debatable and requires further discussion and thorough consultations with the public.

Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on foreign policy and inter-parliamentary cooperation Oleksandr Merezhko and Deputy Chairman of the Committee, Chairman of the subcommittee on Ukraine's Compliance with International Obligations in Human Rights Protection and Gender Policy Marina Bardina, as well as deputy prime minister for European and Euro-Atlantic integration of Ukraine Olga Stefanyshyna, joined the discussion of this issue.

Inter-factional deputy association "Values. Dignity. Family" was represented by its co-chairman Svyatoslav Yurash (Servant of the People) and MPs Mykhailo Bondar (European Solidarity), Andriy Sharaskin (Golos) and Viktor Myalik (For the Future).

On the part of the AUCCRO, the meeting was attended by representatives of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, the All-Ukrainian Union of Evangelical Christian Baptist Churches, the Ukrainian Church of Evangelical Christians, the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, the Ukrainian Christian evangelical church, the Ukrainian Lutheran Church, the Armenian Apostolic Church, the Association of Jewish religious organizations of Ukraine and the Religious Administration of Muslims of Ukraine.

The meeting was also attended by Oleksandr Zayats, chairman of the board of the Institute for religious freedom.

This is the sixth meeting of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and religious organizations with the inter-factional deputy association "Values. Dignity. Family". Such meetings are held monthly, starting in December 2020.