Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood Calls on Government To Withdraw From U.N. Treaty On Rights Of Women


A Jordanian newspaper has reported that the Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood has called on the government to withdraw from a U.N. treaty governing the rights of women. According to the report:

The Islamist movement on Sunday called on the government to withdraw from the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) on grounds that the treaty will lead to a myriad of social problems in the country. In a press conference held at the Islamic Action Front (IAF) headquarters in Abdali, Islamist leaders joined hands with women activists in the party to sound the alarm about the possible consequences of CEDAW on the Jordanian family and society in general. “Families in Jordan face the threat of total collapse under CEDAW,” warned the IAF, the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood, in a statement distributed during the press conference. Activists from the IAF’s Al Afaf womena(euro)(TM)s society said they are concerned about a recent Cabinet decision to lift its reservations on paragraph four of Article 15, which gives women freedom of mobility and choice of residence without consent of their husbands or other male family members. According to IAF activists, the clause contradicts the teachings of Islam, under which authority over women’s mobility is in the hands of their husbands if they are married, and in the hands of brothers or fathers if they are single. (Note 1)

The U.N. describes the CEDAW treaty as follows:

The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), adopted in 1979 by the UN General Assembly, is often described as an international bill of rights for women. Consisting of a preamble and 30 articles, it defines what constitutes discrimination against women and sets up an agenda for national action to end such discrimination.The Convention defines discrimination against women as “…any distinction, exclusion or restriction made on the basis of sex which has the effect or purpose of impairing or nullifying the recognition, enjoyment or exercise by women, irrespective of their marital status, on a basis of equality of men and women, of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the political, economic, social, cultural, civil or any other field.”

Previous posts have discussed the increasing role of “hard-liners” within the Jordanian Brotherhood.

(Note 1: “Islamist Movement Calls on Gov’t To Withdraw From Cedaw” — Jordan Times Headline Jordan Times Online Monday, April 27, 2009 T01:16:13Z)

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