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Sudanese women call to amend gender discriminatory laws

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A group of Sudanese women chant slogans near the home of a demonstrator who died during anti-government in February 2019 (Reuters photo)
October 25, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - Sudanese women representatives across the country have called on the transitional government to review laws violating women’s rights discriminating women.

65 female delegates from different Sudanese regions held a three-day meeting from 17 to19 October in Khartoum to discuss common social and political concerns of women in Khartoum after the Sudanese revolution.

The meeting was organized by the Strategic Initiative for Women in the Horn of Africa (SIHA Network) and attended by the Minister of Social Development and Labour, Lena al-Sheikh Mahjoub and Minister of Justice, Nasr-al-Din Abdel Bari.

In a statement extended to Sudan Tribune on Friday, SIHA said the participants called developing and enforcing policies and legislation that ensures women’s integral role in achieving food security, poverty reduction, and access to health services, education and housing.

Further, they asked the transitional government to repeal and amend "laws that discriminate and violate women’s rights, such as the Criminal law and Personal Status Law;" and to adopting a comprehensive transitional justice programme for combating violence against men and women in conflict areas.

The meeting, also, called on the government to take the needed steps to ratify the "Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and fulfilling all obligations that promote the rights of women in international charters and conventions".

Sudan is the only country in the Arab League that did not join the CEDAW.

This week a group of Islamist women handed over a letter to the justice minister called to not ratify the convention on women’s rights saying it violates the Islamic laws.

Also, Sudan’s former foreign minister Ibrahim Ghandour who is now the chairman of the National Congress Party said in a post on his Facebook page that the CEDAW is the treaty

For his part, said the National Congress Party Ibrahim Ghandour, on his "Facebook" that CEDAW is the treaty is the world’s most harmful document that targets Islam in its constants and can distort the Sudanese culture.

SIHA said that Ministers Mahjoub and Abdel Bari "pledged to make fundamental amendments and committed to the ratification and domestication of all laws and mechanisms that improve the status of women".

(ST)

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