Arab Reservations on the (CEDAW) Convention Limit the Rights of Women’s Equality in Familial Relationships
Prof. Badria Al Awadi
Professor of International Human Rights Law – KILAW
This Paper highlights the importance of the application of the international principle of equality between men and women in particular, in family relationships as it is embodied in Arab National Laws. This paper aims at evaluating whether these rights have been affected by Arab states reservations on the CEDAW Convention as well as on other International Human Rights Conventions related to the principle of equality between men and women.
The assessment of certain Arab family laws shows the negative impact of the reservations made by most of the Arab countries on the CEDAW Convention. In particular, the reservation on article (16) of the convention, which deals with the equality between men and women in family relationships, is of major effect.
The article also emphasizes to which extent the reservations have affected the legal status of the women in the family relationships in the Gulf Cooperation Council Countries (GCC) such as Kuwaiti Family Law of 1984, Omani Family of 1997, United Arab Emirates Family Law of 2004, Qatar Family Law of 2006 and Bahrain Family Law of 2009, as well as certain Arab Countries who amended their Family Laws to enforce the principle of equality between men and women in family relationships, such as the Algerian Family Law of 2005, Egypt’s Family Law of 2000, and Morocco’s Family Law of 2004 .
It is clear that the present situation of the enforcement of the principle of equality between men and women in family relationships is limited due to the reservation on the (CEDAW)Therefore, Arab governments should reconsider their reservation on the (CEDAW) Convention – especially on Article (16) regarding to Family relationships, to secure human security for Arab woman in family relationships.