Regularly dismissed

Another useful item from the UN: a statement that states that have ratified the UN Women’s Rights Convention have to uphold women’s rights even when there’s a war on. Imagine that.

States that have ratified the UN Women’s Rights Convention are obliged to uphold women’s rights before, during and after conflict when they are directly involved in fighting, are providing peacekeeping troops or donor assistance for conflict prevention, humanitarian aid or post-conflict reconstruction, a key UN women’s rights committee has said in a landmark document.

The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) also said that ratifying States should exercise due diligence in ensuring that non-State actors, such as armed groups and private security contractors, be held accountable for crimes against women.

“This document is comprehensive. It includes recognition of women’s central role in preventing conflict and in rebuilding devastated countries,” said CEDAW Chair Nicole Ameline.

“Women’s experiences are regularly dismissed as irrelevant for predicting conflict, and women’s participation in conflict prevention has historically been low,” Ms. Ameline said. “But in reality, there is for example a strong correlation between an increase in gender-based violence and the outbreak of conflict.”

Of course my own country is exempt from all of this, since it didn’t ratify CEDAW…

H/t Michael DeDora


  1. Frankie says

    This certainly is not a single instance of the USA being offside with International law.

    “The US has not ratified any international human rights treaties since December 2002, when it ratified two optional protocols to the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Since that time, important new treaties have been adopted and other long-standing treaties have gained new member states. Unfortunately, the US has too often remained outside these efforts. For example, the US is the only country other than Somalia that has not ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the most widely and rapidly ratified human rights treaty in history. It is one of only seven countries-together with Iran, Nauru, Palau, Somalia, Sudan and Tonga- that has failed to ratify the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).” from Human Rights Watch

    However, one of the more eyebrow-raising decisions by the USA is Hague Invasion Act, which “authorizes the use of military force to liberate any American or citizen of a U.S.-allied country being held by the International Criminal Court”

  2. iknklast says

    Wait a minute. I thought the fact that there is a war on (and when isn’t there?) was an automatic justification for everything. It’s the reason we can’t protect the environment or worry about global warming. So why shouldn’t it be the reason we can’t protect women’s rights? After all, men fight the wars, so why should we worry about women, right?

    (Hope you all recognize sarcasm; I don’t wanta get piled onto)

  3. thephilosophicalprimate says

    Well, at least our defense contractors can’t force their employees subject to workplace discrimination, battery, and sexual assault to accept arbitration instead of taking their cases to court (thanks to the Franken Amendment to the Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2010). Baby steps.

  4. blf says

    Another absurd one is USAlienstan won’t pay dues to any international organization which recognizes Palestine. Since UNESCO did that several years ago, USAlienstan — plus you-know-who — hasn’t paid its UNESCO dues, and hence both countries recently had there voting rights withdrawn (as per UNESCO’s rules).

    From US loses Unesco voting rights after stopping funds over Palestine decision:

    The suspension of US contributions [in 2011], which accounted for $80m a year — 22% of Unesco’s overall budget — brought the agency to the brink of a financial crisis and forced it to cut or scale back US-led initiatives…

    Among Unesco programmes already slashed because of funding shortages is one in Iraq that was intended to help restore water facilities. Also in danger was a Holocaust and genocide awareness programme in Africa to teach about non-violence, non-discrimination and ethnic tolerance, using the example of the mass killing of Jews during the second world war.

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