Women's Rights Treaty Enacted by Fifteen African Nations
Fifteen African countries have ratified the Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa, affirming that reproductive rights are human rights. The Protocol mandates that women have the right to an abortion when pregnancy results from assault, rape, or incest, as well as when the woman’s mental health, physical health, or life is jeopardized, reports Population Action International (PAI). According to the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), this is the first international treaty to assert this right.
The Protocol improves upon the African Charter, which, according to CRR, is often used to justify the subordination of women because of its support for traditional cultural practices, including those that violate women’s rights, such as female genital mutilation (FGM). The Protocol, however, bans FGM, another first for an international document, reports CRR.
Togo became the 15th country to ratify the Protocol on October 26, and the treaty went into effect one month later, reports Southern African News Features. At least 38 other African nations are signatories to the treaty, according to PAI.
Media Resources: CRR briefing paper 12/7/05; PAI press release 12/12/05; Southern African News Features 12/5/05
11/25/2015 Afghan Women Launch 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence - Afghanistan marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and begun participating in the worldwide 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, which is being called in Afghanistan "Peace from Home to the World." During the launch day's event, which was attended by government officials, including First Lady Rula Ghani and women's rights activists, speakers expressed their commitment to ending violence against women.
First Lady, Rula Ghani gave a speech on ending violence against women and supporting women by stating that "war often leads society towards violence and this violence is in violation of human dignity. . . .