United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women - Concluding Observations
Convention on the Elimination
of All Forms of Discrimination
27 March 2013
Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination
Concluding observations on the fourth periodic report of Pakistan, adopted by the Committee at its fifty-fourth session (11 February–1 March 2013)
1. The Committee considered the fourth periodic report of Pakistan (CEDAW/C/PAK/4) at its 1101st and 1102nd meetings, on 12 February 2013 (see CEDAW/C/SR.1101 and 1102). The Committee’s list of issues and questions are contained in CEDAW/C/PAK/Q/4 and the responses of Pakistan are contained in CEDAW/C/PAK/Q/4/Add.1.
2. The Committee appreciates that the State party submitted its fourth periodic report, although it was overdue. It also expresses its appreciation to the State party for its written replies to the list of issues and questions raised by its pre-session working group. It welcomes the oral presentation of the delegation and the further clarifications provided in response to the questions posed orally by the Committee during the constructive dialogue.
3. The Committee commends the State party delegation, headed by Khawar Mumtaz, Chairperson of the National Commission on the Status of Women, which included a representative from the Ministry of Human Rights and the Permanent Mission of Pakistan to the United Nations.
B. Positive aspects
4. The Committee notes with appreciation that, since the consideration of its combined initial, second and third periodic report (CEDAW/C/PAK/1-3) in 2007, the State party has enacted and revised numerous laws and legal provisions aimed at eliminating discrimination against women. In particular, it welcomes the adoption of:
(a) The Criminal Law Act (Second Amendment, 2011), referred to as the Acid Control and Acid Crime Prevention Act;
(b) The Criminal Law Act (Third Amendment, 2011), referred to as the Prevention of Anti-Women Practices Act; and
(c) The Protection against Harassment of Women at the Workplace Act, 2010.
5. The Committee welcomes the Land to the Landless model, established by the government of Sindh Province in 2009 and under which land titles are granted to women.
6. The Committee welcomes the ratification of the following international human rights treaties since the last consideration of the State party by the Committee:
(a) The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, in 2011;
(b) The United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, in 2010;
(c) The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, in 2010;
(d) The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, in 2008.
C. Factors and difficulties preventing the effective implementation of the Convention
7. The Committee takes note of the challenging times faced by the State party, which have been characterized by natural disasters and the devolution of powers to the provinces under the eighteenth Constitutional amendment, as well as by the increase in violent attacks and threats by non-State actors.
D. Principle areas of concern and recommendations
National Assembly and Provincial Assemblies
8. While reaffirming that the Government has the primary responsibility and is particularly accountable for the full implementation of the obligations of the State party under the Convention, the Committee stresses that the Convention is binding on all branches of the State apparatus. It invites the State party to encourage the National Assembly and the Provincial Assemblies, in line with its procedures, where appropriate, to take the necessary steps with regard to the implementation of the present concluding observations and the State party’s next reporting process under the Convention.
Withdrawal of declaration upon accession to the Convention
9. The Committee regrets the information provided to the effect that the relevant federal ministries did not support the withdrawal of the declaration made by the State party upon accession to the Convention.
10. The Committee urges the State party to strengthen its efforts towards the withdrawal of its declaration upon accession to the Convention and reiterates its recommendation to do so without delay (CEDAW/C/PAK/CO/3, para. 13).
Devolution of powers
11. The Committee notes that under the eighteenth amendment to the Constitution (2010), the provinces have been granted greater autonomy, as the federal Government has transferred to them the policymaking authority on crucial sectors such as health, education, and employment as well as on all matters related to the advancement of women. However, the Committee is concerned about the governance challenges embodied in the devolution of powers, including the integration and coordination of policies aimed at the advancement of women, from the national to the provincial level. It is also concerned that the State party lacks the capacity to put in place an efficient mechanism to ensure that the provincial governments establish legal and other measures to fully implement the Convention in a coherent and consistent manner. It is further concerned that the different levels of authority and competence within the State party due to the devolution of powers may result in a differentiated application of the law.
12. The Committee underlines the responsibility of the federal Government in ensuring the full implementation of the Convention and in providing guidance in this respect to the provincial governments. It recommends that the State party set standards and establish an effective mechanism aimed at ensuring a transparent, coherent and consistent implementation of the Convention throughout its territory.
Women and girls affected by internal conflict
13. The Committee is concerned about the escalation of violent threats and attacks by non-State actors and military counter-operations in the State party, including in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas and the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan Provinces, and the negative impact of this situation on women and girls, who have consistently been the prime target of such threats and attacks. It is also concerned about the increasing number of targeted killings and attacks on women human rights defenders. It is deeply concerned at the widespread illicit trade and sale of small arms and their use against women and about the failure of the State party to comply with its due diligence obligation, under article 2 of the Convention, to prevent, investigate, prosecute and punish such acts of gender-based violence.
14. The Committee urges the State party to comply with due diligence obligations under article 2 of the Convention, to:
(a) Prevent, investigate and punish gender-based violence by non-State actors in conflict-affected areas, including by adopting specific investigative procedures, gender-sensitive training and codes of conduct for police, military, lawyers, magistrates, psychologists and health professionals, as well as institute measures to increase access to justice that are responsive to the needs of victims of gender-based violence and provide adequate reparation to affected women and girls;
(b) Ensure prevention and protection measures responsive to the timing and location of increased violence;
(c) Conduct without delay an assessment of the impact of the conflict situation in the State party on women and girls and develop a comprehensive strategy for victims of gender-based violence, in line with Security Council resolution 1325 (2000) and the Convention;
(d) Enact legislation strictly regulating the trade, sale and possession of small arms, and sanction violations thereof severely;
(e) Adopt comprehensive measures to ensure the safety and protection of women human rights defenders and mobilize adequate resources to address the specific risks and security needs of women’s rights defenders and of all personnel working on women’s rights and gender issues;
(f) Invest in technical expertise and resources to enable more age-responsive programming to detect and address the distinct needs of women and girls.
Constitutional and legislative framework and access to justice
15. The Committee is concerned about the lack of full incorporation of the Convention into national legislation, including the absence of a prohibition of all forms of discrimination against women, in line with article 1 of the Convention, and about the persistence of discriminatory provisions against women in a number of laws, such as the Qanoon-e-Shahadat Order 1984 (Law of Evidence), the Hudood Ordinances (1979) and the Citizenship Act (1951). It is concerned at the delay and the lack of a clear time frame for the adoption of a number of important bills, such as the Domestic Violence (Criminal Law amendment) Bill and the Prevention and Control of Women Trafficking Bill, as well as about the poor implementation of laws aimed at the elimination of discrimination against women. The Committee is also concerned that the jurisdiction of the highest courts in the Constitution does not apply to the whole territory of the State party, hence women could be deprived of their constitutional rights, as well as about the ambiguity caused by the recognition in the Constitution of the Federal Shariat Court. It is also concerned at the lack of awareness by the judiciary of women’s rights and relevant domestic legislation. It is further concerned at the existence of parallel justice systems (jirgas and panchayats), despite the ruling against their legality, and of different informal dispute resolution mechanisms (Musalihat Anjuman), which discriminate against women.
16. The Committee calls upon the State party:
(a) To include in its Constitution and/or in other relevant legislation provisions prohibiting all forms of direct and indirect discrimination against women, including sanctions, in line with article 1 of the Convention (and in line with article 25 of the Constitution), and repeal all discriminatory laws, including the Hudood Ordinances, the Law of Evidence and the Citizenship Act (1951);
(b) To adopt without delay pending bills, such as the Domestic Violence Bill and the Prevention and Control of Women Trafficking Bill; and design strategies to overcome obstacles to their adoption, including through the sensitization of parliamentarians and members of the Council of Islamic Ideology on women’s rights;
(c) To ensure the effective enforcement of existing legislation aimed at protecting women and at eliminating discrimination against them, such as the Prevention of Anti-Women Practices Act (2011);
(d) To take measures to establish a unified judicial system, to eliminate all parallel legal systems and informal dispute resolution mechanisms which discriminate against women and to sensitize the public on the importance of addressing violations of women’s rights through judicial remedies rather than parallel justice systems;
(e) To provide systematic training to judges, prosecutors and lawyers on women’s rights, including on the Convention, the Optional Protocol thereto and all relevant domestic legislation for women; ensure the provision of free legal aid services; implement legal literacy programmes; and increase the awareness of women and girls of all legal remedies available to them.
National machinery for the advancement of women
17. The Committee is concerned that since the eighteenth amendment to the Constitution and the devolution of powers in the area of the advancement of women’s rights from the national to the provincial levels, there have been governance challenges in the integration and coordination of policies aimed at the advancement of women. It is further concerned at the lack of capacity of the State party to put in place an efficient mechanism to ensure the adoption of legal and other measures to fully implement the Convention in a coherent and consistent manner at the provincial level, as well as the lack of capacity and resources of the Women Development Departments, which may prevent them from fulfilling their mandate as the provincial machineries for the advancement of women. The Committee expresses its concern about the paucity of information with respect to the human and financial resources available to the National Commission on the Status of Women to fulfil its broad mandate to monitor and safeguard women’s rights and promote gender equality.
18. The Committee underscores the responsibility of the federal Government in ensuring the full implementation of the Convention across its territory, including at the provincial level. It recommends that the State party:
(a) Ensure that the devolution of powers does not adversely impact the advancement of women in all spheres of life, and that federal institutions such as the National Commission on the Status of Women are fully equipped to effectively coordinate and oversee the formulation and implementation of gender equality policies and programmes and the prioritization of women’s rights in development strategies, in line with the Convention, across the territory of the State party;
(b) Institutionalize an inter-provincial coordination mechanism with adequate human and technical resources, and also ensure adequate financial resources for the Women Development Departments;
(c) Ensure that the National Commission on the Status of Women has adequate human, technical and financial resources to fulfil its mandate, including by establishing provincial commissions on the status of women and by ensuring that its recommendations on legislation, policies and programmes are considered without delay by the relevant governmental body.
Temporary special measures
19. The Committee is concerned at the uneven allocation and implementation of the 10 per cent national civil service employment quotas for women among the provinces due to the devolution of the employment sector to the provinces. It is also concerned that the 5 per cent quota for members of minority communities to be employed in the public sector is gender neutral, and as such may indirectly discriminate against women from minorities. It regrets the expiration of the local government system, which used to reserve 33 per cent of seats for women at the local government level.
20. The Committee recommends that the State party, in accordance with article 4, paragraph 1, of the Convention and general recommendation No. 25 (2004) on temporary special measures:
(a) Ensure consistency in the allocation and implementation of quotas aimed at accelerating equality between women and men across the provinces, in particular the civil service employment quotas, and use other temporary special measures as part of a necessary strategy to achieve women’s substantive equality in fields such as political participation, health, education and employment, with a focus on women belonging to minority communities;
(b) Ensure that the local government system is restored, that the requirement of 33 per cent of seats being reserved for women is retained and that women from religious minorities are represented in such a system.
Stereotypes, harmful practices and violence against women
21. The Committee is concerned about the persistence of patriarchal attitudes and deep-rooted stereotypes concerning women’s roles and responsibilities that discriminate against women and perpetuate their subordination within the family and society, all of which have recently been exacerbated by the influence of non-State actors in the State party. It expresses serious concern about the persistence, among others, of child and forced marriages, “karo-kari”, stove burning and acid throwing, marriage to the Koran, polygamy and honour killing. It is concerned that despite the provisions in the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act of 2004 that criminalize offenses in the name of so-called honour, the Qisas and Diyat ordinances continue to be applied in these cases, resulting in perpetrators being given legal concessions and/or being pardoned and not being prosecuted and punished. The Committee expresses its concern at the high prevalence of domestic violence and marital rape and at the absence of clear legislation criminalizing such acts. It is also concerned about the paucity of information about the implementation of the standard operating procedures on the treatment of women victims of violence and at the scarce number of shelters for victims. It is further concerned at the inconsistencies in the collection of data on violence against women and about reports on the wide circulation of small arms and its impact on women’s security.
22. In line with its general recommendation No. 19 (1992) on violence against women, the Committee calls upon the State party:
(a) To ensure the proper implementation of the Prevention of Anti-Women Practices Act of 2011 and other relevant legislation, ensure uniformity in the application of the law and repeal the provisions of the Qisas and Diyat ordinances which discriminate against women;
(b) To address shortcomings in the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act of 2004 and repeal all provisions under which perpetrators of so-called honour crimes are allowed to negotiate pardon with victims’ families;
(c) To strengthen support services for victims of violence, such as counselling and rehabilitation services, both medical and psychological; increase the number of shelters to ensure the implementation of the standard operating procedures for the treatment of victims in all provinces;
(d) To adopt a comprehensive strategy to eliminate all harmful practices and stereotypes, in conformity with article 2, and specifically 2 (f), and article 5 (a) of the Convention, which includes awareness-raising efforts targeting the general public and the media, religious and community leaders, in collaboration with civil society and women’s organizations;
(e) To ensure a robust and effective regulation of the arms trade as well as appropriate control over the circulation of existing and often illicit arms, in order to enhance the security of women and girls;
(f) To take appropriate measures to ensure the collection of disaggregated data on all forms of violence against women, including domestic violence, by the Gender Crime Cell.
Trafficking and exploitation of prostitution
23. The Committee is concerned at reports indicating that children, in particular girls who are internally trafficked, are subject to bonded labour, domestic servitude and child marriages. It is also concerned at the lack of statistical data and information about the extent of the exploitation of women and girls for the purpose of prostitution.
24. The Committee urges the State party:
(a) To conduct research on the prevalence of internal and international trafficking, including its scope, extent, causes, consequences and purposes, as well as its potential link with bonded labour, domestic servitude and child marriage;
(b) To develop and implement a national comprehensive plan on internal and international trafficking in persons based on the findings of the research, with a result-oriented approach, including specific indicators and targets, in line with the Convention;
(c) To strengthen mechanisms for the investigation, prosecution and punishment of trafficking offenders and support services for victims;
(d) To conduct nationwide awareness-raising campaigns on the risks and consequences of trafficking targeted at women and girls, and provide systematic training to all relevant law enforcement officials on its causes and consequences;
(e) To adopt measures for the rehabilitation and social integration of victims of forced prostitution;
(f) To ratify the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (Palermo Protocol).
Participation in political and public life
25. The Committee reiterates its concern at the low level of participation of women in political and public life, especially in decision-making positions and in the local administration, as well as in the diplomatic service. It is concerned that only 17 per cent of seats in the National Assembly, Provincial Assemblies and the Senate are reserved for women. It is further concerned that patriarchal attitudes and deeply rooted stereotypes regarding the roles of women and men in society result in the forced disenfranchisement of women and impede and discourage their participation in elections (as candidates and voters). It reiterates its concern at the low participation of women in the judiciary in the superior courts and the total absence of women judges in the Supreme Court (CEDAW/C/PAK/CO/3, para. 32).
26. The Committee calls upon the State party:
(a) To amend relevant laws, where appropriate, in order to increase the quotas allocated for women in the National and Provincial Assemblies and in the Senate to a minimum of 33 per cent, as per international standards;
(b) To establish a procedure for filing complaints in cases of forced disenfranchisement of women and adopt the draft bill submitted by the Election Commission of Pakistan, advocating re-polling where less than 10 per cent of women’s votes were polled;
(c) To implement awareness-raising activities on the importance of women’s participation in decision-making, with the aim to eliminate patriarchal attitudes and stereotypes regarding the roles of women and men in society;
(d) To take appropriate measures to increase the number of women judges in superior courts and ensure the appointment of women in the Supreme Court.
27. The Committee is concerned at the pervasive gender inequality in the field of education, which is characterized by a high illiteracy rate among women, the low enrolment of girls, particularly at the secondary level, and their high dropout rate, especially in the rural areas. It is further concerned about the negative impact on girls of prioritization of boys’ education over that of girls, the lack of qualified female teachers and school infrastructure, and the long distances to school, all of which have a negative impact on girls’ education. It is also concerned at the lack of measures to readmit girls to school after pregnancy and the high number of child marriages in the State party. It expresses its deep concern at reports of ongoing violent attacks and public threats against female students, teachers and professors by various non-State actors, as well as the escalating number of attacks on educational institutions, in particular a large number of girls-only schools, which has disproportionately affected the access of women and girls to education. The Committee expresses its deep concern at recent attacks on school buses targeting children, including girls.
28. The Committee recommends that the State party ensure that, at the national and provincial levels, coordinated and consistent measures are taken to:
(a) Improve the literacy rate of women and girls, reduce and prevent dropouts among girls, especially at the secondary level, formulate re-entry policies enabling young women to return to school after pregnancy, and organize programmes for girls affected by conflict who leave school/university prematurely;
(b) Improve the quality of education by providing all teachers with systematic and gender-sensitive training and by conducting a revision of the curriculum and textbooks to remove gender stereotypes;
(c) Take the necessary measures to prevent the occurrence of attacks and threats against educational institutions which undermine the fundamental rights of women and girls, in particular, the right to education, and to ensure that perpetrators of such acts of violence are promptly investigated, prosecuted and punished;
(d) Consider the establishment of a rapid response system whenever there are attacks on educational institutions, in order to promptly repair and rebuild them and replace educational materials so that women and girls can be reintegrated into schools/universities as soon as possible.
29. The Committee is concerned about the low participation of women in the formal sector, the job segregation and concentration of women in low-paid and low-skilled jobs, and the widening pay gap and lack of legal provisions guaranteeing the principle of equal pay for work of equal value. It is concerned at the situation of women working in the informal sector (agriculture, domestic and home-based work), in particular the fact that they are not recognized in the existing labour legislation as workers, and as such are unprotected and do not have access to social security and benefits.
30. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Adopt effective measures in the formal labour market, including temporary special measures, to increase female participation and eliminate both horizontal and vertical occupational segregation, to narrow and close the wage gap between women and men, and to ensure the application of the principle of equal remuneration for equal work and work of equal value, as well as equal opportunities at work;
(b) Prepare a plan of action for the protection of women working in other areas of the informal sector, such as agriculture and domestic work, in line with the Convention;
(c) Prioritize the adoption of the National Policy on Home Based Workers and ensure its proper implementation so as to guarantee that women have adequate access to social security benefits; and take measures to ensure that the corresponding policy is adopted by all provinces in the State party;
(d) Ratify International Labour Organization (ILO) Convention No. 177 (1996) concerning Home Work, as well as ILO Convention No. 189 (2011) concerning Decent Work for Domestic Workers, and amend the relevant domestic legislation accordingly.
31. The Committee is concerned about the high maternal mortality rate in the State party, women’s lack of adequate access to family planning services, including contraceptives, restrictive abortion laws and the large number of women resorting to unsafe abortions, as well as the lack of adequate post-abortion care services. It is further concerned at the wide privatization of the health system and the inadequate budget allocated to the health sector, in particular with regard to sexual and reproductive health-care services, especially in rural remote areas.
32. In line with its general recommendation No. 24 (1999) on women and health, the Committee calls upon the State party:
(a) To expedite the adoption of the pending Reproductive Health Care Bill;
(b) To improve women’s access to health-care facilities and medical assistance by trained personnel, especially in rural and remote areas, and ensure adequate allocation of human and financial resources to the health sector in all provinces;
(c) To strengthen its efforts to reduce the high rate of maternal mortality, and ensure access to affordable contraceptive methods throughout the country;
(d) To review its abortion legislation with a view to expanding the grounds under which abortion is permitted, for example, cases of rape and incest, and prepare guidelines on post-abortion care to ensure that women have access to this type of service;
(e) To ensure that the privatization of the health sector and the devolution to the provinces of the main health competence do not reduce further the already limited health services accessible to women.
33. The Committee is concerned at the prevalence of customs and traditional practices that limit the degree of involvement of rural women in development programmes and prevent them from inheriting or acquiring land and other property. It is concerned that rural women farmers are not recognized as such, because in the State party a farmer (kisan) is the person who owns land. The Committee is also concerned at the difficulties faced by rural women in gaining access to health and social services and in participating in decision-making processes at the community level.
34. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Review and amend the relevant legislation and policies to recognize women as farmers, so they can own land and property;
(b) Abolish traditional practices and customs that prevent rural women from participating in development projects as decision makers and beneficiaries and from fully enjoying their rights;
(c) Strengthen its efforts to address the needs of rural women and provide them with better access to health, education, clean water and sanitation services, fertile land and income-generating projects.
Refugee and internally displaced women and girls
35. The Committee notes the response of the State party with regard to the assistance provided to internally displaced persons due to natural disasters or terrorist activities by non-State actors. It also notes that the State party has hosted one of the world’s largest refugee populations for over 30 years. However, it is concerned at the lack of a national legal framework on refugees and a gender-sensitive approach to address the specific needs and risks of internally displaced and refugee, as well as undocumented, women and girls. It is further concerned at the partial implementation by the State party of the Management and Repatriation Strategy for Afghan Refugees in Pakistan of 2010, which negatively affects, among others, Afghan refugee women who are heads of household.
36. The Committee urges the State party:
(a) To ensure that adequate protection and assistance is provided for internally displaced women and girls consistent with the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement;
(b) To implement all components of the Management and Repatriation Strategy for Afghan Refugees in Pakistan, with the view to develop sustainable solutions for refugees in situations of vulnerability, such as women heads of household;
(c) To adopt measures for the protection of victims and the prevention and punishment of gender-based violence in refugee and internally-displaced-persons camps or settlements;
(d) To ensure that refugee and internally displaced women and girls have adequate access to health services, education, food, shelter, free movement and opportunities to secure justice and durable solutions;
(e) To accede to the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees and the 1967 Protocol thereto, and the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness, with the aim to develop a national legislative framework to strengthen the protection of refugees, asylum seekers and stateless persons;
Marriage and family relations
37. The Committee is concerned about the existence of multiple legal systems with regard to marriage and family relations in the State party and its discriminatory impact on women. It is concerned about the current status of Hindu and Christian laws on marriage and divorce and the fact that under Muslim law women have unequal rights with respect to inheritance, the dissolution of marriage and its economic consequences, and the guardianship of children. It is concerned about the persistence of child and forced marriages and at the fact that the minimum age of marriage for girls is 16. It is deeply concerned about the abduction of women and girls belonging to religious minorities for the purpose of forced conversion and forced marriages. It is also concerned that polygamy is permitted under certain circumstances. The Committee also notes with concern that property relations are governed by a regime of separate property, which often discriminates against women.
38. The Committee recalls article 16 of the Convention and calls on the State party:
(a) To adopt the Hindu Marriage Bill, the Christian Marriage (Amendment) Bill and the Christian Divorce Amendment Bill;
(b) To revise the Dissolution of Muslim Marriages Act (1939) with the aim to repeal discriminatory provisions against women; and to amend the relevant legislation to raise the minimum age of marriage for girls to 18;
(c) To take the necessary measures to ensure that marriage and family cases are efficiently handled and heard by civil courts;
(d) To conduct research on the extent of the phenomenon of abduction of girls for the purposes of forced conversion and forced marriages and develop a comprehensive strategy to address this phenomenon to ensure the effective investigation of cases, prosecutions and punishment of perpetrators as well as the provision of remedies and support services for victims;
(e) To take necessary legislative measures to prohibit polygamy;
(f) To enact legal provisions to ensure that, upon dissolution of marriage, women have equal rights to property acquired during marriage, in line with article 16, paragraph 1 (h), of the Convention and the Committee’s general recommendation No. 21 (1994).
Optional Protocol and amendment to article 20, paragraph 1, of the Convention
39. The Committee encourages the State party to ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention and to accept, as soon as possible, the amendment to article 20, paragraph 1, of the Convention concerning the meeting time of the Committee.
Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action
40. The Committee calls upon the State party to utilize the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action in its efforts to implement the provisions of the Convention.
Millennium Development Goals
41. The Committee calls for the integration of a gender perspective in accordance with the provisions of the Convention in all efforts aimed at the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.
Dissemination and implementation
42. The Committee recalls the obligation of the State party to systematically and continuously implement the provisions of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. It urges the State party to give priority attention to the implementation of the present concluding observations and recommendations between now and the submission of the next periodic report. The Committee therefore requests the timely dissemination of the concluding observations, in the official languages of the State party, to the relevant State institutions at all levels (national, regional, local), in particular to the Government, the ministries, the Parliament and the judiciary, to enable their full implementation. It encourages the State party to collaborate with all stakeholders concerned, such as, inter alia, employers’ associations, trade unions, human rights and women’s organizations, universities and research institutions, media. It further recommends that its concluding observations be disseminated in an appropriate form at the local community level, to enable their implementation. In addition, the Committee requests the State party to continue to disseminate the Convention, its Optional Protocol and jurisprudence, and the Committee’s general recommendations to all stakeholders.
43. The Committee recommends that the State party avail itself of international assistance, including technical assistance, to develop a comprehensive programme aimed at the implementation of the above recommendations and the Convention as a whole. The Committee also calls upon the State party to continue its cooperation with specialized agencies and programmes of the United Nations system.
Ratification of other treaties
44. The Committee notes that the adherence of the State party to the nine major international human rights instruments would enhance the enjoyment by women of their human rights and fundamental freedoms in all aspects of life. The Committee therefore encourages the State party to consider ratifying the treaties to which it is not yet a party, namely, the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of all Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families and the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance.
Follow-up to concluding observations
45. The Committee requests the State party to provide, within two years, written information on the steps undertaken to implement the recommendations contained in paragraphs 22 and 28 above.
Preparation of next report
46. The Committee invites the State party to submit its fifth periodic report by March 2017.
47. The Committee requests the State party to follow the harmonized guidelines on reporting under the international human rights treaties, including guidelines on a common core document and treaty-specific documents (HRI/GEN/2/Rev.6, chap. I).
 The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights; the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination; the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women; the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment; the Convention on the Rights of the Child; the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families; the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.