UN APPLAUDS FIJI REPORT ON EQUAL RIGHTS FOR WOMEN

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Only Pacific island nation to submit a response

SUVA, Fiji (FijiSUN, Feb. 4, 2011) - Fiji is the only country in the Pacific that has submitted its latest report to the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).

Minister of Social Welfare, Women, and Poverty Alleviation Dr. Jiko Luveni submitted the report to the UN CEDAW committee.

It is the latest country report for the period up to 2008.

Dr. Luveni said there were three positive aspects of the report that was highlighted by the committee.

"Firstly the committee has welcomed the new Domestic Violence Decree and Child Welfare Decree in line with the provision of the Convention that have been promulgated," Dr. Luveni said.

The committee also welcomed the Women’s plan of action addressing the State’s commitment to the empowerment of women.

Dr. Luveni also highlighted that the committee also took into consideration Government’s decision to construct women’s centers in provinces and semi-urban settlements.

Following this the Ministry of Women, Social Welfare and Poverty Alleviation has also been asked to disseminate all observations and reports to relevant stakeholders committed to gender equality and national development.

Dr. Luveni said the Ministry has planned out two days for a national consultation which would focus on the objectives of reporting back to the stakeholders and formulating on plan for the implementation and monitoring of the CEDAW articles with the respective line ministries.

"The implementation of the concluding observations is very important as it will be the basis of Fiji’s next periodic report to be submitted to the UN in 2014," Dr. Luveni said.

Fiji is one of the four Pacific countries that have directly ratified the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and the only country that is up to date in its reporting of progress made so far.

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