Thousands of people took to the streets across France this weekend to protest against violence against women, ahead of today’s International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

Described by the UN as “the most widespread, and devastating human rights violations in the world”, the organisation says one-in-three women experiencing violent or sexual abuse.

The European Parliament is set to debate the issue in Strasbourg later today.

Meanwhile the Council of Europe has highlighted the success of the Istanbul Convention, which came into force five years ago, and has since been signed by all EU member states.

The convention is a human rights treaty combatting violence against women and domestic violence. A Council of Europe statement urges further action however, saying: “There is a long way to go, and it is crucial that the Istanbul Convention is not only ratified but also fully implemented.”

The protests in France followed several high profile cases in France including a woman in Alsace who was stabbed to death in front of her daughter.

The French government is set to reveal the conclusions of its consultations on the issue of domestic violence today.

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