CSO letter to European Commission re. medical care for women and girls

In light of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women we signed a letter addressed to the European Commission regarding the right to non-discriminatory medical care for women and girls in conflict settings. The letter was instigated by the Global Justice Center and was signed by 91 human rights, humanitarian, development, medical, legal and religious organizations from over 35 countries. The specific requests made to the Commission are as follows:

We, (the hereunder signed) request that the European Commission make clear that international law – not politics – determines the right to medical care of women and girls affected by armed conflict, and take the following steps:

  • Issue a memorandum to your humanitarian partners and grantees to inform them of your updated policy concerning safe abortions for war rape victims, IHL’s protections for medical personnel, and the primacy of IHL in armed conflict settings.
  • Develop a monitoring framework together with your humanitarian partners and grantees to ensure IHL obligations are met, and specifically that women and girls receive appropriate care, including the provision of safe abortion under the conditions set out in your policy.
  • Ensure EU funds are kept separate from US humanitarian funds in all accounts, and as separate from any other donor funds that may prevent EU aid from being administered in full compliance with IHL.