Law reform

Saudi Arabia's appointed Shura Council has approved establishing a public defender program, a step that will strengthen the criminal justice system, Human Rights Watch said today. The program approved by the council on January 11, 2010 will appoint a lawyer at the state's expense to any criminal defendant who cannot afford one.

Bangladesh’s dozens of Islamic political parties must drop Islam from their name and stop using religion when on the campaign trail following a court ruling, the country’s law minister said on Monday. The Supreme Court on Sunday upheld an earlier ruling by the High Court from 2005 throwing out the fifth amendment of the constitution, which had allowed religion-based politics to flourish in the country since the late 1970s. “All politics based on religion are going to be banned as per the original constitution,” Law Minister Shafique Ahmed said.

He beat them every day, but some days were worse than others. In those days he would first attack the children -he would tie up and beat their son and daughter. If she tried to stop him, he would put a knife to their throats and threaten to kill them. On other days he would ask her and the children to chose their own instrument of torture - a thick electric cable, a hammer, a hose. After each beating - and some of them lasted for hours - he would rape her and then force all three of them into a shower to wash off the blood.

إذا كان مشروع قانون الأحوال الشخصية السوري الجديد الذي أعدته اللجنة المكلفة من قبل رئيس مجلس الوزراء، يأتي في السياق العام للقوانين والتشريعات السورية التي تكرس العنف والتمييز بحق أفراد المجتمع السوري بشكل عام والمرأة والطفل بشكل خاص، فأنه أيضاً يأتي بعكس تطورات الحياة الاجتماعية وبالضد من إرادة التغيير الذي كان ينشده أبناء هذا المجتمع ولا ينسجم أبداً مع المكانة التي وصلت إليها وطموحها في تحقيق المساواة القانونية والفعلية مع الرجل في الحقوق والواجبات في جميع مجالات الحياة. وهو فضلاً عن ذلك، يدق المسمار الأخير في نعش الوحدة الوطنية وعملية التنمية واستقرار الأسرة وبناء المجتمع المدني القائم على أسس المواطنة والمساواة في الحقوق والواجبات بين جميع المواطنين بغض النظر عن عرقهم وجنسهم ودينهم

It is not my right to get the Lebanese nationality; it is that of my mother who is a Lebanese citizen.” – Khaled. More than 130 women and men gathered at the Order of Engineers on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, 25 November 2009, to take part in the press conference called for by the Arab Women’s Right to Nationality Campaign.

Association of Democratic Women of Morocco (ADFM) criticized what they call an “ambiguous position” of Morocco towards the removing of their reservations to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). The statement was launched in a press release on the occasion of the Moroccan women's day celebration, which coincides this year with the 30th anniversary of CEDAW, and in the context of the national and regional campaign "Equality without reservation."

فاس، المغرب – أحرزت المرأة في شمال إفريقيا تقدماً عظيماً في السعي لحقوقها والحفاظ عليها. وتتواجد النساء في هذه المنطقة، المعروفة بالمغرب، في طليعة العالم العربي من حيث الحقوق الفردية والمساواة في النوع الاجتماع، ويشكّلن أمثلة تُحتذى للنساء العربيات الأخريات. ويمكن استنباط عدد من الدروس من تجارب المرأة الملهمة في شمال إفريقيا، وخاصة في المغرب وتونس.

Les femmes d’Afrique du Nord ont fait d’immenses progrès pour ce qui est de promouvoir et de faire respecter leurs droits. Les Maghrébines viennent en tête en matière de droits individuels et d’égalité des sexes et servent de modèle pour les autres femmes du monde arabe. On peut tirer un certain nombre de leçons de leur expérience plutôt encourageante, surtout du côté du Maroc et de la Tunisie.

Women in North Africa have made tremendous progress in promoting and upholding their rights. Women in this region—commonly known as the Maghreb—are at the forefront of the Arab world in terms of individual rights and gender equality, and constitute models for other Arab women to follow. A number of lessons may be drawn from the inspiring experience of women in North Africa, especially in Morocco and Tunisia.

In 1995 a significant set of reforms to the Sri Lanka penal code was enacted. The process was consultative and women’s groups were included in the discussions that led to the reforms. While the 1995 amendments were, by and large, a welcome modernization of the penal code, nineteen years after these amendments, still other laws remain which undermine women’s equality. The demand for further legal reform is about this ‘unfinished business’. At a time of elections Cat’s Eye particularly wants to highlight some laws (which apply to both men and women, and some to women in particular) that require urgent reform so that the public and political parties can take note.

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