In these excruciating times of war, we, the Women Parliamentarians of the Group of Socialists, Democrats and Greens in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, condemn in the strongest possible way the Russian Federation’s war of aggression against Ukraine.

With this war of aggression, the long-lasting political regime in Russia has been provoking civilian casualties, displacement of millions and a tremendous humanitarian crisis in Ukraine.

 In this unprecedented aggressive invasion, Ukrainian women and girls have turned into heroes and strong human rights defenders, who with bravery and stoic attitude defend their country and the principle of freedom. Since the beginning of the war, millions, mainly women and children, have been forced to flee for their lives. Many other women, journalists, activists, as well as our, Parliamentarian colleagues, have stayed in Ukraine facing great threat to their right to life.

All of these women of Ukraine, have not started the war but are most hardly hit by it as they remain the most vulnerable targets. In addition to risking their own lives, they run the risk of being subjected to sexual violence, abuse, human trafficking, and other types of war crimes and dire human rights violations. The aggression is a direct breach of all conventions of the Council of Europe and the international law.

We call all PACE parliamentarians and member states to stand in solidarity with Ukrainians. National authorities must open secure corridors for the safe evacuation of civilians and to ensure that refugees have access to their basic needs and rights. We stand in strong solidarity with the Ukrainian women today as well as during their critical role in rebuilding peace in the future.

Strasbourg, 15th March 2022