Turkish professor receives Council of Europe award

Turkish professor receives Council of Europe award

Turkish professor receives Council of Europe award

Professor Feride Acar, one of Turkey’s most prominent academics who has worked to promote women’s rights, was awarded the Council of Europe Pro Merito Medal on May 23.

Director General of Democracy Snezana Samardzic-Markovic who presented the medal pointed out that Acar’s professional expertise combined with her vision, leadership, wisdom and capacity to build compromise and alliances and her diplomatic skills have established her as an authority who commands respect from all those involved in upholding and promoting women’s rights.

Acar has contributed actively to reach a consensus among member states for the Convention on Preventing and Combatting Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence known as the Istanbul Convention because it opened to signatures in 2011 in Istanbul.

She later became the first president of the convention’s monitoring body known as GREVIO.

In her speech, Acar drew attention to populist movements and governments in many countries around the world, which are “challenging the values and ideals of civil liberties and gender equality as part and parcel of their retrogressive world views.”

While feeling disturbed by these threats levelled against the very ideals enshrined in the Istanbul Convention, Acar said she was not discouraged.

“With the passion, dedication and unrelenting work of its supporters, I am sure the Istanbul Convention will play a critical role in countering retrogressive movements,” she said.

Acar’s mission as president of GREVIO has ended as she was not re-nominated by Turkey. Instead, Professor Aşkın Asan, a former Justice and Development Party (AKP) parliamentarian will represent Turkey beginning in June.

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