On video: women lawyers speak about the impact international standards can have on domestic legislation

The ICJ invited a number of women lawyers to Geneva to participate in a training workshop and gain practical experience of UN human rights mechanisms as part of a project supported by the German Mission to the United Nations in Geneva.

One group of women came to Geneva in June during the 38th session of the UN Human Rights Council and 70th session of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, and the other group came in September to coincide with the 39th session of the Human Rights Council.

During the week long training workshops participants learned about the international human rights mechanisms available to tackle issues of women’s access to justice and gained hands-on exposure to the operation of these mechanisms in practice.

Participants spoke about the impact that the CEDAW Convention has had in their domestic legislation.

Donia Allani a lawyer and lecturer at the Faculty of Legal, Political and Social Sciences of Tunis, discussed the impact of CEDAW in shaping legislation in Tunis to eliminate violence against women and facilitate access to justice but noted that women still faced stigmatization.

Donia Allani commented, however, that UN mechanisms could be improved to ensure that all activists and feminists can access these mechanisms without fear of reprisals.

Uzbek lawyer Sabina Saparova, also spoke of the impact that international law and standards can have domestically. She explained that Uzbekistan’s ratification of the CEDAW Convention provided an international commitment to incorporating equality between men and women into its legal structure. Recently the president of Uzbekistan initiated the first steps toward the adoption of a law on the prevention of domestic violence.

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