The sixth periodic report on the Convention was presented at the 82nd session of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women
On June 16, 2022, at the 82nd session of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women held in Geneva, the sixth periodic report on the Convention was presented by the State Committee for Family, Women and Children Affairs on behalf of the Government of Azerbaijan.
Chair of the State Committee, Mrs. Bahar Muradova, welcomed the participants and expressed her satisfaction in presenting the sixth periodic report on the implementation of the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women on behalf of the Government of Azerbaijan.
Noting that the report was prepared by the Working Group established by the Decree of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan on the basis of the information provided by the relevant Ministries and Committees, the Chair also pointed out that meetings and consultations were held with the civil society working in the field of women's rights.
During the past period, B.Muradova stated that activities were continued in the direction of improving the legislation on ensuring women's rights and strengthening institutional mechanisms, and noted that the issue of raising awareness and strengthening inter-institutional relations in the direction of eliminating gender stereotypes is always in the center of attention. It was reported that according to the Law of the Republic of Azerbaijan "On guarantees of gender (men and women) equality", the State Committee supervises the provision of gender equality, and a two-year report has already been submitted to the Milli Majlis of the Republic of Azerbaijan in this regard.
Bahar Muradova pointed out that employment and self-employment support services are provided to women from vulnerable groups and living in difficult life conditions. It was noted that 3 Community Resources and 15 Women's Resource Centers were established in the regions within the framework of projects implemented jointly with international organizations in the country. Currently, there are 2799 members of the Women's Resource Center. To date, the number of women who have benefited from those centers has exceeded 8 thousand.
Speaking about the next military aggression of Armenia against Azerbaijan in 2020, at a time when the global pandemic continued, the chairman emphasized the end of the 44-day Patriotic War with the historical victory of Azerbaijan. It was noted that as a result of the recent military aggression of Armenia, 93 civilians, including 12 children and 27 women were killed, 454 civilians (101 women, 50 children) were injured, a total of 12,292 residential and non-residential areas, and 288 vehicles were damaged,1018 farms were found to be damaged.
Stating that peacekeeping, restoration and reconstruction activities, as well as the return of internally displaced persons to their lands, are an absolute priority for Azerbaijan, the Chair of the Committee drew special attention to the issue of clearing the liberated territories from mines and unexploded ammunition. She said that speeding up the process of demining the territories is of particular importance for the return of the former IDPs to their lands and the socio-economic reintegration of these territories.
Mrs. Muradova pointed out that social and psychological support was provided to up to 10,000 people in 3,000 families consisting of family members of the martyrs of the Patriotic War, veterans, and victims of Armenian terrorism in the post-war period: "The government of Azerbaijan, including civil society organizations and international organizations, within the framework of the joint project that work is being done with people affected by the war, services have been provided in the direction of improving their psychosocial condition and providing legal support".
It was noted that in addition to the above, the Government of Azerbaijan is carrying out substantial activities to improve women's access to justice, their equal participation in public and social life, providing them with quality educational services, promoting entrepreneurship, increasing the number of women among small and medium entrepreneurs and creating appropriate support mechanisms, improving their knowledge and participation in ICTs, as well as increasing employment opportunities for women.
Along with the work done and the positive outcomes achieved, Mrs. Muradova highlighted a number of existing problems and factors hindering the process of full gender equality in the country, such as negative gender stereotypes, early marriages and sex-selective abortions.
She noted that international experience in combating stereotypes, promoting gender culture, implementing gender policies, combating gender-based violence has been acquired through successful cooperation with international organizations.
The Chairperson of the Committee stressed that the women's state policy being implemented in Azerbaijan is in line with the commitments the country has made in international documents. As creating equal participation and opportunities for all is one of the main criteria for better development.
She expressed confidence that the recommendations of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women would contribute to more effective implementation of the Convention, as well as to addressing existing gaps and challenges.
At the end of the report, it was noted that the Republic of Azerbaijan is ready for effective cooperation and open dialogue with the CEDAW Committee.
Afterwards, the Azerbaijani delegation answered questions from experts of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women.