Liberal Democrat MEPs are calling for an EU-wide implementation of the Istanbul Convention to protect women against violence
The Istanbul Convention is the first legally-binding instrument creating a comprehensive legal framework and approach to combat violence against women.
It focusses on preventing domestic violence, protecting victims and prosecuting accused offenders.
The UK signed the convention in 2012 but, seven years later, still has not ratified it, meaning the country is not legally bound to follow any part.
Jane Brophy Liberal Democrat MEP for the North West made the claim at her party's conference in Bournemouth, where they passed the 'Continuing the Fight for Gender Equality' motion.
Liberal Democrat MEP Jane Brophy said:
“It's really distressing that the UK Government seems to be refusing to ratify this urgent legislation. What possible reason is there to be kicking this down the road?
"Lib Dems have led the fight for women’s rights for decades and we will continue to do so. Today we are calling on all EU countries, including the UK, to bring the Istanbul Convention into law immediately.
"Only by working together in a concerted effort to prevent and combat violence against women can we succeed in a truly violence-free society."