War is not gender-neutral.
In case of armed conflict, women suffer disproportionately. Women rarely seek war but are the most affected by war. In peace talks, they are usually absent, if not excluded.
The conflict in Ukraine cannot leave us silent. We fear for the health and well-being of millions of women and girls who may suffer injury, loss of their homes and their jobs, displacement, loss of schooling, rape, and death. Women are much more vulnerable to war crimes than men.
We call upon the states to fully respect the human rights of all women and girls in Ukraine as stated in the Convention on Human Rights of the Council of Europe to which all Council of Europe member states agreed to adhere, including Russia and Ukraine.
We also urge all European countries to welcome citizens of Ukraine who flee the zone of combat and seek safety. Women and girls should receive special protection due to their greater vulnerability.
Our organisation, Soroptimist International of Europe, is present in most European countries, including Russia and Ukraine. We work on projects educating, empowering, and enabling women and girls – please join us in helping women in warzone.