2011 02/02

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Our reference: CEDAW – the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. Adopted by the UN on Dec. 18, 1979, entered into force Sept. 3, 1981. As of December 2010 the Convention entered into force for 186 countries. It was referring to the convention, in 2000 the UN General Assembly has designated 25 November International Day for the Eradication of Violence against Women.

Compliance with the principles of the Convention watching Special Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, which consists of 23 experts.

On the implementation of the CEDAW Convention governments every 4 years gives the UN report, but Belarus did not do so since 2004 usually pre experts familiar with alternative points of view to be able to pick the most topical issues and discuss them with the authorities.

According to one of the initiators of an alternative report, the chairman of the Women’s Independent Democratic Movement “Lyudmila Petya, in 2002-2007 no progress in addressing gender issues in Belarus has not happened. For example, the authorities have failed to enact laws on gender equality and combating domestic violence. System for the protection of victims of domestic violence in the country also remains unavailable. Meanwhile, the results of sociological research, 75% of women in Belarus have faced various forms of violence. However, about 30% of women at least once in their lives suffered physical violence.

Another affected by the problem – poverty of women in Belarus, among which, according to statistics, one and a half times more people with higher education than men. At the same time because of existing stereotypes in the Belarusian society, employers often give men a larger salary and the number of women in senior positions is 10 times less than men. At the same time, said L. Petina, the state is trying to stimulate the birth rate, as it was assumed that the woman allegedly too busy with their careers to the detriment of demography. Lyudmila Petina recalled the speech the Head of State Alexander Lukashenko, in which he spoke of the need to increase the population of 20-30 million people.

Chairman of the Board of the Legal Transformation Elena Tonkacheva tell the experts about the fate of political prisoners, women, and the instructions to women from the mouth of the CEC to “sit at home and cook soup.” According to Elena Tonkacheva, officials were unable to answer many questions from the Committee of Experts. “Inconvenient” for government representatives have, for example, the question about the percentage of women who voted in the last presidential election, about the existence of article 193.1 of the criminal (activity on behalf of unregistered organization), as well as the harsh conditions of detention of women by police, their conditions of detention in jail . It was, in particular, about the fate of Irina Khalip, Natalia Radzina and Anastasia Palazhanka accused of rioting. Official delegation as a whole did not deny the existence of problems with gender equality in Belarus, but still tried to talk more about his plans than on the current state of affairs.

Do human rights defenders, however, there is a hope that the recommendations of the Committee of CEDAW will be accounted for by the Belarusian authorities in the preparation of National Action Plan for Gender Equality for 2011-2015.

Source: spring96.org

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