No to gender: Council of Churches speaks out against ratification of Istanbul Convention

Representatives of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations believe that the ratification of the Istanbul Convention carries serious risks for Ukrainian society and the family, since along with counteraction to domestic violence, a problematic definition of the concept of "gender" is introduced, reports the Institute of Religious Freedom with reference to the website of the UCCRO.

This was said by the heads of churches and representatives of denominations during a meeting with people's deputies of Ukraine, members of the Interfactional Deputies’ Association "Equal Opportunities" on March 3.

Members of the Council of Churches are unanimous in that the Ukrainian state must take effective measures to counter domestic violence. However, this should not happen at the expense of the moral foundations of Ukrainian society, nor should it distort among children and young people the understanding of a full-fledged family made up by God as a union between a man and a woman.

Remarks of religious figures to the Istanbul Convention are that this document distorts the understanding of the concept of "gender" at the international level. Now, under the "gender" it is suggested to understand not the gender - female and male, but the "socially fixed roles, behavior, activities and characteristics that a certain society considers appropriate for a woman and a man".

Such a twisted approach, according to the Council of Churches, can make the Istanbul Convention an instrument for popularizing new "gender roles" and same-sex relations in Ukrainian schools and universities, which would be a disastrous way for Ukraine.

In addition, GREVIO, the independent expert body, is responsible for monitoring the implementation of the Convention. Given that in many EU countries, gender equality programs are reduced to the promotion of same-sex relationships, religious figures are concerned about the possible pressure on Ukraine from this structure.
"We categorically oppose that the homosexual lifestyle and behavior are treated as natural, normal and useful for society and individuals. We are against the idea that homosexuality is promoted as a variant of the norm of sexual life and that the state encourages its citizens to same-sex sexual relations," said the Declaration of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations, adopted in May 2007.

Of the 44 states that signed the Istanbul Convention, only half have ratified it (22 countries). Among the countries that have not ratified the Istanbul Convention are Great Britain, Germany, Norway, Switzerland, Ireland, Iceland, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Georgia, Slovakia, Turkey.
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