Discrimination in law

Lebanon: Give women equal citizenship rights to men under the nationality law

Update: 
Not an update
Date: 
2010 Jul 12

Hiam Abd El SamadHiam Abd El Samad and her Egyptian husband Anwar Hasaneen married in Lebanon 23 years ago and have three daughters Nour 17, ‘Amar 12 and ‘Ayia 9 years. The family continues to reside in Lebanon, which they consider their home. However, because Hiam cannot pass her Lebanese nationality to her husband and daughters under Lebanese nationality law, the family has had to suffer significant hardships and deprivation.

What You Can Do: 

Please write to the Lebanese President, the Prime Minister, the Speaker of the House and the Minister of Justice asking them to recognize the adverse effects that the discriminatory Lebanese nationality law has on the families of Lebanese women married to foreign men and, accordingly, to revise the Lebanese nationality law to ensure that all Lebanese citizens, male or female, have the equal right to confer their Lebanese nationality on their spouses and children. TAKE ACTION!

Letters should go to:

President Michel Suleiman
President of Lebanon
Baabda - The Presidential Palace
Beirut, Lebanon
Fax: +961 1 425 393
Tel: +961 5 468 390 / 457 111
Email: open@presidency.gov.lb
president_office@presidency.gov.lb

Mr. Nabih Berri
Speaker of the House
Najmeh Square
Beirut, Lebanon
Fax: +961 1 983 059
Tel: +961 1 982 045/9
Email: President@lp.gov.lb

Mr. Mohamed Najeb Mikati
Prime Minister
Grand Serail
Riad Solh Street
Beirut, Lebanon
Fax: +961 1 746 805 / +961 1 980 500
Tel: +961 1 746 800 00 / +961 1 983 022 to 30

Mr. Shakib Qorthbawi
Minister of Justice
P.O. Box 9400
Badaro - Sami el Solh Street
Near the Palace of Justice
Beirut, Lebanon
Fax: +961 1 427 975
Tel: +961 1 422 944
Email: info@justice.gov.lb

With copies to:

Mrs. Wafa Suleiman
President - National Commission of Lebanese Women
Hazmieh - Main Road - Chahine Commercial Center - 2nd Floor
Beirut, Lebanon
Fax: +961 5 955 103
Tel: +961 5 955 101/2
Email: info@nclw.org.lb

Mr. Marwan Charbel
Minister of Interior & Municipalities
Sanayeh
P.O. Boxes 9710 and 9500
Beirut, Lebanon
Fax: +961 1 744 429
Tel: +961 1 750 607, +961 1 751 607
Email: info@moim.gov.lb

Sample letter

Mexico: Take action against the officials who raided a high security women’s shelter in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua State

Update: 
Not an update
Date: 
2010 Jul 19

On 9 June 2010, fourteen men, six of whom were carrying high-powered weapons, arrived at the secret facilities of Sin Violencia A.C. (“Without Violence”), the only high security shelter in Ciudad Juárez and Chihuahua State, Mexico, for women at extreme risk of violence. Heading the group was court clerk Román García, who presented a copy of an official letter signed by the First Judge of the Bravos Judicial District Family Court, Lic. Guadalupe Manuel de Santiago Aguayo.

What You Can Do: 

Please write to the Head of the Chihuahua State Supreme Court and the Governor of Chihuahua and ask them to take disciplinary action against the state officials involved in the raid on the shelter and to look into the possibility of prosecuting these officials who have so blatantly violated both the letter and the spirit of Mexico’s General Law on Women’s Access to a Life Free of Violence. Ask them also to ensure that relevant government officials are thoroughly trained in implementing this law and in conducting themselves appropriately towards victims of violence and their defenders. Remind them of their obligations under state, federal and international law to protect the human rights of women. TAKE ACTION!

Letters should go to:

Lic. Rodolfo Acosta Muñoz
Head of the Supreme Court of the State of Chihuahua
Calle Allende No 901.
C.P. 31000, Zona Centro
Chihuahua, Mexico
Tel: +52 614 1 800 700 ext. 12800
Email: rodolfo.acosta@stj.gob.mx

Lic. José Reyes Baeza
Governor of the State of Chihuahua
Palacio de Gobierno
Calle Aldama # 901 Col Centro
C.P. 31000
Chihuahua, Mexico
Fax: +52 614 4 29 34 64
Tel: +52 614 4 29 33 00 ext. 11123
Email: secretariaparticularchihuahua@hotmail.com

Send a copy to: Centro de Derechos Humanos de las Mujeres
Email: accion@cedehm.org.mx

 Sample letter

 

Saudi Arabia: Forced Divorce—Women under Perpetual Guardianship of Male Relatives

Update: 
Not an update
Date: 
2009 Feb 1

Fatima Bent Suleiman Al Azzaz married Mansour Ben Attieh El Timani in 2003 with the consent of her father (her guardian) as required in Saudi Arabia. The couple was happily married and had two children, a girl Nuha, born in May 2004, and a boy Suleiman, born in November 2005.

What You Can Do: 

Please write to the King of Saudi Arabia and the Minister of Justice asking them to ensure that the Saudi legal and judicial system reflect the stated claim that women are not subject to male guardianship, but rather have the right, among other things, to enter into and stay in marriages of their choice without third party interference. In this respect, urge them to support the establishment of a codified personal status law to guarantee the rights of women in marriage and divorce, ensuring that such law is based upon principles of equality and non-discrimination. Call upon them to take urgent action to reunite Fatima, Mansour and their children as a family whose rights are recognized and protected under the Saudi Constitution, as well as other couples who have been divorced without their consent (to the extent such couples want to be reunited) and to ensure that no couple is divorced without the consent of at least one of them. Letters should go to:

His Majesty, King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Tel: +966 1 488 2222
Fax: +966 1 491 2726

His Excellency Dr. Muhammad bin Abdul Elkarim Abdul Azziz El Issa
Minister of Justice
University Street, Riyadh 11137
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Fax: +966 1 401 1741

With a copy to:

Dr. Bandar bin Abdullah El Aiban
President
The Human Rights Commission
P.O. Box 58889 Riyadh 11515
King Fahed Street
Building 373, Riyadh
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Fax: +966 14 612 061
Email: shakwa@haq-ksa.org

Letters: 

[His Majesty King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Fax: +966 1 491 2726]

[His Excellency Dr. Muhammad bin Abdul Elkarim Abdul Azziz El Issa
Minister of Justice
University Street, Riyadh 11137
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Fax: +966-1-401-1741]
[Date]

[Your Highness] [Dear Minister],

I am writing to you in regard to the case of Fatima Bent Suleiman Al Azzaz who was forcibly divorced from her husband Mansour Ben Attieh El Timani in a decision upheld by the Cassation Court. The court held that any relative of a woman could petition a court to invalidate her marriage on the basis of her “tribal incompatibility” with her husband and upheld the principle of perpetual male guardianship of women by their male relatives. Several other cases of forced divorce have followed.

I urge you to take immediate action to reunite Fatima, Mansour and their two children as a family whose rights are recognized and protected under the Saudi Constitution, as well as other couples who have been divorced without their consent (to the extent that such couples want to be reunited) and to ensure that no couple is divorced without the consent of at least one of them. In this regard, I ask you to ensure that the Saudi legal and judicial system reflect the stated claim of the Saudi government that women are not subject to male guardianship, but rather have the right, among other things, to enter into and stay in marriages of their choice without third party interference. I urge you to support the establishment of a codified personal status law to guarantee the rights of women in marriage and divorce, ensuring that such law is based upon principles of equality and non-discrimination.

I thank you for your attention.

Yours sincerely
 

Iran: Kobra Najjar Faces Imminent Execution by Stoning for Prostitution

Update: 
UPDATE
Date: 
2008 Jul 1

 

What You Can Do: 

Please write to the Iranian officials below, calling for Kobra’s immediate release, the commutation of all sentences of death by stoning and the prohibition by law of all cruel, inhuman and degrading punishments in accordance with Iran’s obligations under the ICCPR. Urge the officials also to initiate a comprehensive review of the Civil and Penal Codes of Iran to remove all provisions that discriminate and perpetuate discrimination against women, including those regarding adultery and fornication, in accordance with Iran’s own constitutional provision for equality before the law. 

His Excellency Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi
Head of the Judiciary
c/o Ministry of Justice          
Park-e Shahr
Teheran
Islamic Republic of Iran
Email: iripr@iranjudiciary.org, irjpr@iranjudiciary.com and info@dadgostary-tehran.ir
Phone: +98 21 22741002, +98 21 22741003, +98 21 22741004, +98 21 22741005

Note: The contact information above may encounter delivery problems so please keep trying to send your message. Thank you for taking action!

Please also contact the Iranian embassy in your country. The following link may help you find the contact information: http://www.embassyworld.com/embassy/Iran/Iran.html

Bahrain: Embassy of Iran in Manama
Tel: 722400, 722660
Fax: 722101

Canada: Embassy of Iran in Ottawa http://www.salamiran.org/
Tel: 613 2354726 Ext 225
Fax: 613 2325712

Denmark: Embassy of Iran in Copenhagen http://www.iran-embassy.dk
Tel: 39160071
Fax: 39160075

Finland: Embassy of Iran in Helsinki
Tel: (9) 6869240
Fax: (9) 6869241

Germany: Embassy of Iran in Frankfurt
Tel: (0) 695600070, (0) 695600730
Fax: (0) 6956000728

India: Embassy of Iran in New Delhi
Tel: (011) 3329600, (011) 3329601, (011) 3329602, (011) 3320491
Fax: (011) 3325493

Jordan: Embassy of Iran in Amman
Tel: (6) 4641281, (6) 4641282
Fax: (6) 4641383

Kenya: Embassy of Iran in Nairobi
Tel: (2) 720343, (2) 720796
Fax: (2) 713966

Lebanon: Embassy of Iran in Beirut
Tel: (1) 821224

Malaysia: Embassy of Iran in Kuala Lumpur
Tel: (3) 4514830, (3) 4514824
Fax: (3) 4562904

Norway: Embassy of Iran in Oslo http://home.eunet.no/%7Eiranamb/
Tel: 23 27 29 60
Fax: 22 55 49 19

Russia: Embassy of Iran in Moscow
Tel: (95) 9177282, (95) 9170039, (95) 9178440
Fax: (95) 2302897

Sweden: Embassy of Iran in Stockholm
Tel: (80) 7650829, (80) 7653174
Fax: (80) 7653119

Switzerland: Embassy of Iran in Berne
Tel: (31) 3510801, (31) 3510802
Fax: (31) 3515652

United Arab Emirates: Embassy of Iran in Abu Dhabi http://www.iranembassy.org.ae
Tel: (12) 4447618
Fax: (12) 4448714

United Kingdom: Embassy of Iran in London http://www.iran-embassy.org.uk/
Tel: 02072253000
Fax: 02075894440

United States: Interests Section of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Washington, D.C. http://www.daftar.org/
Tel: 202 9654990
Fax: 202 9651073

Iran: Stoning to Death for Adultery—Discriminatory Laws Target Iranian Women

Update: 
Not an update
Date: 
2007 Mar 1

 

What You Can Do: 

Please write to the Iranian officials below, calling for the immediate commutation of all sentences of death by stoning and the prohibition by law of all cruel, inhuman and degrading punishments, such as stoning and flogging, in accordance with Iran’s obligations under the ICCPR.  Urge them to promote compliance with Article 17 of the ICCPR, which protects individuals from unreasonable interference with their privacy.  Urge the officials also to initiate a comprehensive review of the Civil and Penal Codes of Iran to remove all provisions that discriminate and perpetuate discrimination against women, including those regarding adultery and fornication, in accordance with Iran’s own constitutional provision for equality before the law.  Encourage them to ratify international human rights instruments such as the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women. Letters should be addressed to:

His Excellency Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi
Head of the Judiciary
c/o Ministry of Justice          
Park-e Shahr
Teheran
Islamic Republic of Iran
Fax: +98 21 3311 6567
Email: iripr@iranjudiciary.org

His Excellency Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
President of the Islamic Republic of Iran
Presidency Office
Pasteur Avenue, Postal Box 1423-13185
Teheran 13168-43311
Islamic Republic of Iran
Fax: +98 21 6646 2774
Email: dr-ahmadinejad@president.ir

Pakistan: The Hudood Ordinances--Denial of Justice for Rape: The Case of Dr. Shazia

Update: 
Not an update
Date: 
2005 Aug 1

 

What You Can Do: 

Please write to the Pakistani officials listed below. Ask them to take immediate steps to ensure the repeal or amendment of the Hudood Ordinances to remove the discrimination against women and ensure that women who have been raped receive equal protection under the law in accordance with Pakistan’s own Constitution and its obligations under CEDAW. Urge them to ensure that Dr. Shazia’s case is immediately and fully investigated and that those responsible for her rape, as well as those who threatened Dr. Shazia with death or other harm, are brought to justice. Please also write to the Canadian authorities to ask that Dr. Shazia, Khalid and her adopted son be allowed to live and work in Canada where they have relatives and are hoping to resettle. Letters should be addressed to:

General Pervez Musharraf
President of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan
Aiwan-E-Sadr
Islamabad, PAKISTAN
Fax: +92-51-922-1422
To e-mail President Musharraf, please go to: http://www.presidentofpakistan.gov.pk/WTPresidentMessage.aspx

Mr. Muhammad Wasi Zafar
Minister of Law, Justice & Human Rights
S-Block, Pak Secretariat
Islamabad, PAKISTAN
Fax: +92-51-920-2628
E-mail: minister@molaw.gov.pk

The Honorable Diane Finley, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Citizenship and Immigration
Jean-Edmonds South Tower, 21st Floor
365 Laurier Avenue West
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 1L1, CANADA
Fax: +1-613-957-2688
E-mail: Minister@cic.gc.ca

Afghanistan: Peace and Security Undermined: Suspension of Malalai Joya from Parliament

Update: 
UPDATE
Date: 
2007 Oct 1

Malalai JoyaMalalai Joya entered Afghanistan’s new Parliament in September 2005 pledging to “protect the rights of the oppressed and safeguard women’s rights.”  She won the second highest number of votes in Farah province, taking her seat in the Lower House (Wolesi Jirga).  A staunch critic of the warlords and defender of women’s rights, Malalai has consistently been stopped from speaking in Parliament or had speeches cut short, h

What You Can Do: 

Please write to the officials below calling for the reinstatement of Malalai Joya and a full investigation into the way she was excluded from representing her constituency and participating in parliamentary proceedings.  Remind them of the provisions of the Afghan Constitution that guarantee freedom of speech and women’s equality.  Insist that the right of Malalai Joya and all other Members of Parliament to peacefully express their views be protected and that procedures be put in place to prevent the suppression of free speech and democracy.  Call on these officials to ensure the personal safety of Malalai and all others seeking to protect and promote their full equal rights under the Constitution.

President Hamid Karzai
Gul Khana Palace
Presidential Palace
Kabul, Afghanistan
president@afghanistangov.org

Chief Justice Abdul Salam Azimi
Afghan Supreme Court
Charai Seahat Hama
Microyana
Kabul, Afghanistan

Yunus Qanooni, Speaker of the House
Afghanistan National Assembly
Wolesi Jirga
Kabul, Afghanistan

Please send copies of your letters to: 

Dr. Husn Banu Ghazanfar
Minister of Women’s Affairs
Ministry of Women’s Affairs
Shar-e-naw
Kabul, Afghanistan

Afghanistan: Access to Justice for Afghan Women—A New Chief Justice

Update: 
UPDATE
Date: 
2006 Dec 1

In December 2004 Equality Now issued Women’s Action 21.3 to highlight issues affecting Afghan women’s access to justice.

What You Can Do: 

Please write to Chief Justice Azimi congratulating him on his appointment as Chief Justice, and urging him, together with the other Supreme Court judges, to take a leadership role in promoting and protecting the rights of women in accordance with Afghanistan’s Constitution and the international human rights standards, including CEDAW, to which Afghanistan is a party.  Reinforce the critical role they can play in enforcing equal protection of the law for women and sending a strong signal that violence against women in Afghanistan will not be tolerated.  Letters should be addressed to:

Chief Justice Abdul Salam Azimi
Afghan Supreme Court
Charai Seahat Hama
Microyana
Kabul, Afghanistan

with a copy to: 

Mr. Ghulam Sarwar Danish
Minister of Justice
Ministry of Justice
Pashtunistan Watt
Kabul, Afghanistan
Email: info@moj.gov.af  

Afghanistan: Access to Justice for Afghan Women

Update: 
UPDATE
Date: 
2004 Dec 1

Afghan womenThree years since the formal end of the war and the removal of the Taliban from power, the situation in Afghanistan continues to threaten the safety, security, and human rights of Afghan citizens, particularly Afghan women.

What You Can Do: 

Please write to President Karzai and call on him to replace Chief Justice Shinwari, together with all other judges who are not prepared to uphold the provisions of Afghanistan’s Constitution and international law that provide for equality between men and women and prohibit all forms of discrimination. Urge President Karzai to appoint a new Chief Justice and ensure the appointment of Supreme Court judges who will uphold all the provisions of Afghanistan’s Constitution, including its prohibition of discrimination against women. Please send a copy of your letter to the Afghan Ambassador to your country.

President Hamid Karzai
The Palace
Protocol Office
Kabul
Afghanistan

Afghanistan: Peace, Security and the Role of Women

Update: 
UPDATE
Date: 
2002 Apr 1

Several months after the overthrow of the Taliban, Afghan women are still unsafe in their own country. Large parts of Afghanistan are controlled by local warlords, competing for power and taking revenge for past injustices committed by the largely Pashtun Taliban. Women, particularly of the Pashtun ethnic group, are reportedly being subjected to widespread rapes, beatings, kidnappings and other forms of violence and intimidation.

What You Can Do: 

Please write to the President of the Security Council asking him to circulate your letter to the other Security Council members. Call on the Security Council to authorize the immediate expansion of UN-authorized security forces in Afghanistan and to post these forces throughout the country with a mandate to disarm warring factions. Please also write to the President of the United States, urging him to reverse United States opposition to the expansion of the security forces and noting the special responsibility of the United States Government to help rebuild Afghanistan following the destruction caused by US bombing in the war. Urge him also to ensure that the funding commitments made by the United States and other donor countries in Tokyo are honored and delivered without further delay. Letters should be addressed to:

Security Council President for July 2003
H.E. Mr. Inocencio F. Arias
Permanent Mission of Spain
823 United Nations Plaza
345 East 46th Street, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10017, USA
Fax: 1-212-949-7247
Email: spain@spainun.org

Security Council President for September 2003
Sir Jeremy Quentin Greenstock, KCMG
Permanent Mission of the United Kingdom
One Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, 28th Floor
885 Second Avenue
New York, NY 10017, USA
Fax: 1-212-745-9316
Email: uk@un.int

Security Council President for August 2003
H.E. Dr. Mikhail Wehbe
Permanent Mission of the Syrian Arab Republic
820 Second Avenue, 15th Floor
New York, NY 10017, USA
Fax: 1-212-983-4439
E-mail syria@un.int

Security Council President for October 2003
H.E. John D. Negroponte
Permanent Mission of the United States
799 UN Plaza
New York, NY 10017, USA
Fax: 1-212-415-4443
Email: usa@un.int

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