Dialogue on Gender Justice & the Law in the Arab States Region

Putting into Action Knowledge on Laws affecting Gender Equality

Date: Thursday, December 6, 2018

Beirut - Guaranteeing equality before the law, full access to justice, and protection from violence for all women and girls are key to achieving gender equality in the Arab States region. Without such guarantees, no country will be able to realize the grand promise of prosperity, peace and sustainability enshrined in the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development.

Based on this premise, the recently completed study on Gender Justice & the Law provides a comprehensive assessment of laws and policies in 18 Arab countries. It examines guarantees of gender equality and protections against gender-based violence in the constitutions; penal codes; personal status codes; nationality laws; and labour laws.

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is partnering with the

United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia

(ESCWA), the United Nations Population Fund(UNFPA) and the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), to launch the Gender Justice & the Law study on 10 December 2018. The two-day launch event will initiate a dialogue among gender experts, activists and government officials on avenues of action to achieve gender equality through the law at country and regional levels, based on the findings of the 18 country reports.

What: Dialogue on the Gender Justice & the Law in the Arab States Region study.

When: Opening Day: Monday, 10 December 2018 – 09:00-15:00. Registration starts at 08:30 A.M. Technical Day: Tuesday, 11 December 2018 – 09:00-17:30.

Where: Movenpick Hotel Beirut - Général de Gaulle Avenue, Beirut, Lebanon.

Who: The event will bring together around 150 participants including representatives of governments; parliaments; national women’s machineries; civil society and women’s organizations; and academia, from across the Arab region. The opening session will feature:

Mounir Tabet Executive Secretary, a.i., ESCWA

Mourad Wahba Regional Director, UNDP & Chair, Regional UN Development Group 

John Godwin Lead Author of the Gender Justice & the Law study 

Asma Khader Lawyer and Human Rights Activist - Key Note Address

Panel discussions covering the main areas of the study will follow the launch. A draft agenda is attached. Members of the media are welcome to all sessions of the opening day on 10 December 2018

Sessions will be conducted in Arabic with simultaneous interpretation available into English and French.

The second day will feature a technical workshop with experts, practitioners and activists to identify next steps and priorities for action across the region.

For more information, please contact:


Noeman Alsayyad | Communication Advisor | Regional Bureau for Arab States

E-mail: noeman.alsayyad@undp.org Mobile: +962 (79) 567 2901

Mona El-Yassir | Communication Officer | Lebanon Country Office

E-mail: mona.el-yassir@undp.org Mobile: +961 (3) 240 036

UN ESCWA:        

Nabil Abu-Dargham | Head of Communication and Information Unit

E-mail: dargham@un.org Mobile: +961 (70) 993 144

Rania Harb | Public Information Assistant

E-mail: harb1@un.org Mobile: +961 (70) 008 879


Tamara Alrifai | Advocacy & Communications Advisor | Arab States Regional Office

E-mail: alrifai@unfpa.org

UN Women:          

Diego De La Rosa | Regional Communications Consultant | Regional Office for Arab States

E-mail: diego.delarosa@unwomen.org Mobile: +971 (50) 6862 312 


About the Gender Justice & the Law in the Arab States Region study

The study provides a systematic review of the laws in 18 countries of the Arab states region to assess whether they promote or impede equality between women and men and provide protection against gender-based violence. The countries included in the study are: Algeria, Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, State of Palestine, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, and Yemen. Collectively, this study refers to these countries as the Arab states region. 

The study includes analysis of constitutional guarantees of gender equality and constitutional protections against gender-based violence; penal codes and whether the country has domestic violence laws that address gender-based violence; personal status codes and whether they provide women with equality in marriage, divorce and inheritance; nationality laws and whether they ensure that women and men enjoy equal rights in relation to citizenship; and labour laws and whether they provide protection from discrimination and gender-based violence in the workplace. 

About UNDP:

UNDP partners with people at all levels of society to help build nations that can withstand crises, and drive and sustain the kind of growth that improves the quality of life for everyone. On the ground in more than 170 countries and territories, we offer a global perspective and local insight to help empower lives and build resilient nations. 

About ESCWA:

ESCWA provides a framework for the formulation and harmonization of sectoral policies for member countries, a platform for congress and coordination, a home for expertise and knowledge, and an information observatory. 

About UNFPA:

UNFPA is the United Nations sexual and reproductive health agency, ensuring rights and choices for all. Our mission is to deliver a world where every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe and every young person's potential is fulfilled.  

About UN Women:

UN Women is the UN organization dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. A global champion for women and girls, UN Women was established to accelerate progress on meeting their needs worldwide. 

Follow us Hashtag: #GenderJusticeAR on Twitter @UNDPArabic; @UNDPArabStates; @UNESCWA; @UNFPA_Arabic; @unwomenarabic

Read in Arabic.