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As a legally binding instrument, the Convention is unique in that it clearly delineates the state’s obligations to protect women’s right to a life without violence. Article 5 of the Convention states that:
Every woman is entitled to the free and full exercise of her civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, and may rely on the full protection of those rights as embodied in regional and international instruments on human rights. The States Parties recognize that violence against women prevents and nullifies the exercise of these rights.
Article 7 of the Convention articulates the obligations of States Parties with respect to their role in the protection of women’s right to a life without violence. Specific obligations are listed that flow from the States Parties’ formal undertakings to refrain from committing acts of violence against women; demonstrate due diligence in preventing, investigating, and punishing violence against women; reform existing laws, policies, and administrative practices contributing to violence against women; and ensure that women victims have access to restitution, reparations, and other forms of just and effective remedies. Article 8 of the Convention also specifies that a number of other programs and measures must be adopted to promote public education and awareness, to mobilize communities in the fight against violence against women, and to offer specialized services and assistance to women victims.
The current review focuses on the implementation of the measures and dispositions described in articles 7 and 8 of the Convention. It also considers the efforts that are being deployed, as required by Article 9 of the Convention, to take special account of the vulnerability of women to violence by reason of their age, race, ethnic background, status as immigrants, socioeconomic position, or disabilities, among other factors.