Violence against women and domestic violence in relation to the Istanbul Convention

AuthorNatalie Videbaek Munkholm
10 Violence against women and domestic vi olence in relat ion to the Istanbul
10.1 General (legal) context
10.1.1 Surveys and reports on issues of violence against women and domestic violence
The Ministry of Gender Equality, published an Action Plan against Violence Against Women
in March 2019. The action plan focuses on violence against women in close relationships,
paying particular attention to mental or psychological violence. Mental or psychological
violence has specifically been criminalised. (Act No. 329/2019 amending the Crimin al
Code) Th e action plans in addition contains a number of initiatives with the purpose o f
combating mental or psychological violence.56
10.1.2 Overview of national acts on violence against women, domestic violence and issues
related to the Istanbul Convention
In 2014, the Danish Criminal Code wa s amended so as to comply with the ratification of
the Istanbul Convention. The preparatory works to the amendment act state that Danish
legislation was already almost compliant with the Istanbul Convention. Section 94 of the
Criminal Code was adjusted a s to comply with the Con vention. Under S ection 94(4) the
period in which a complaint can be presented has been prolonged with regard to
notification. Thus, the limitation period will begin from the date the victim is 21, if the
victim was under 18 when the crime was committed. Furthermore, forced marriage, forced
abortion and forced sterilisation were added to t he list of crimes covered by the Criminal
10.1.3 National provisions on online violence and online harassment
The Government h as taken initiatives to prevent sexual harassment in the digital r ealm,
including through a package of initiatives against digital sexual harassment.
For example, the maximum penalty for sharing in timate photographs or videos of others
without consent has been increased from six months to a term not exceeding three yea rs
under aggravating circumstances. The maximum fine for indecent exposure, such as
unsolicited sharing of intimate photos of oneself, has been doubled.
10.1.4 Political and societal debate
In 2017, the Danish Government took action to launch a set of initiatives to combat digital
sexual harassment. The initiatives include an increase in the maximum penalty for sharing
intimate photographs or videos without conse nt, an d better education of the police to
increase the quality of investigations.57
10.2 Ratification of the Istanbul Convention
Act No. 168, 26 February 2014, amended the Criminal Code (Lov om ændring af
straffeloven (Gennemførelse af Europarådets konvention til forebyggelse og bekæmpelse
af vold mod kvinder og vold i hjemmet). The act came into force on 1 July 2014.
Denmark has ratified the Istanbul Convention. It is stated in the preparatory works to the
ratification act that almost the whole content of the convention was already covered by
Danish law, so it was nearly in compliance with the obligations in the convention, and only

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