Time to Wake Up: Reservations to the Istanbul Convention and the Role of GREVIO
KFG Working Paper Series, No. 56, Berlin Potsdam Research Group “The International Rule of Law – Rise or Decline?”
23 Pages Posted: 2 May 2022
Date Written: March 2022
The question of whether the monitoring bodies have competence concerning reservations (alone or shared with state parties) is at the center of the discussion of reservations to human rights treaties that has occupied many international legal scholars over the last few decades. The Istanbul Convention’s treaty monitoring body, the Group of experts on action against violence against women and domestic violence (GREVIO), is the only human rights treaty monitoring and adjudication body with a direct competence (one that stems directly from the treaty) concerning reservations. However, as practice to date shows, it does not make much use of this power. This is a big disappointment considering all the efforts of other bodies in the past and the doctrinal positions of various scholars. The main aims of the article are threefold: to present GREVIO's practice to date concerning reservations, to provide a brief historical overview of how other human rights treaty bodies have approached their role concerning reservations, and finally, to attempt to explain why GREVIO has abandoned a more proactive position on reservations.
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