United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women - Concluding Observations
Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination
* Adopted by the Committee at its fifty-eighth session (30 June-18 July 2014).
Concluding observations on the combined second and third periodic reports of Mauritania*
1. The Committee considered the combined second and third periodic reports of Mauritania (CEDAW/C/MRT/2-3) at its 1221st and 1222nd meetings, on 3 July 2014 (see CEDAW/C/SR.1221 and 1222). The Committee’s list of issues and questions is contained in CEDAW/C/MRT/Q/2-3 and the responses of Mauritania are contained in CEDAW/C/MRT/Q/2-3/Add.1.
2. The Committee appreciates that the State party submitted its combined second and third periodic reports. It also appreciates the State party’s written replies to the list of issues and questions raised by the pre-sessional working group and welcomes the oral presentation by the delegation and the further clarifications provided in response to the questions posed orally by the Committee during the dialogue.
3. The Committee commends the State party for its high-level delegation, which was headed by the Minister of Social Affairs, Children and the Family, Lemina Mint Elghotob Ould Moma. The delegation included representatives of the Ministry of Justice and of the Permanent Mission of Mauritania to the United Nations Office and other international organizations in Geneva. The Committee appreciates the constructive dialogue that took place between the delegation and the Committee.
B. Positive aspects
4. The Committee welcomes the progress achieved since the consideration in 2007 of the State party’s initial report (CEDAW/C/MRT/1) in taking legislative measures, in particular the adoption of the following:
(a) Act No. 2013-011 of 23 January 2013, criminalizing slavery and torture as crimes against humanity;
(b) Organization Act No. 2012-034 of 12 April 2012, promoting women’s access to electoral mandates and elective offices;
(c) Act No. 2010-031 of 20 July 2010, modifying Ordinance No. 2006-015 of 12 July 2006 and establishing the National Human Rights Commission of Mauritania as an independent constitutional organ;
(d) Act No. 2010-021 of 10 February 2010, criminalizing illegal trafficking of migrants;
(e) Act No. 2007-042 of 3 September 2007, on HIV and AIDS response;
(f) Act No. 2007-048 of 3 September 2007, criminalizing slavery and suppressing practices similar to slavery.
5. The Committee welcomes the State party’s efforts to improve its institutional and policy framework aimed at accelerating the elimination of discrimination against women and promoting gender equality, such as the adoption of the following:
(a) Updated poverty reduction strategy paper for the period 2011-2015, which includes a gender component;
(b) National Plan of Action for Rural Women, in 2009;
(c) National strategy against female genital mutilation, in 2007.
6. The Committee welcomes the fact that, in the period since the consideration of the previous report, the State party has ratified or acceded to the following international instruments:
(a) Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the Optional Protocol thereto, in 2012;
(b) International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, in 2012;
(c) Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, in 2012.
C. Principal areas of concern and recommendations
7. The Committee stresses the crucial role of the legislative power in ensuring the full implementation of the Convention (see the statement by the Committee on its relationship with parliamentarians, adopted at the forty-fifth session, in 2010). It invites the parliament, in line with its mandate, to take the necessary steps regarding the implementation of the present concluding observations between now and the next reporting period under the Convention.
8. The Committee welcomes the information provided by the State party’s delegation during the dialogue about its intention to withdraw its general reservation to the Convention. The Committee notes with concern, however, that the State party intends to replace it with specific reservations to articles 13 and 16 of the Convention, especially given that those reservations are potentially incompatible with the object and purpose of the Convention. The Committee notes with concern that the State party has not yet accepted the amendment to article 20 (1) of the Convention concerning the meeting time of the Committee.
9. The Committee invites the State party to expedite, without delay, the process to withdraw its general reservation to the Convention and encourages the State party to refrain from replacing it with specific reservations to articles 13 and 16. It especially calls upon the State party to ensure the full implementation of the Convention and, to that end, to seek advice from other countries with an Islamic legal framework that have harmonized their laws with international human rights obligations.
Visibility of the Convention, the Optional Protocol and the Committee’s
10. The Committee notes with appreciation the programme implemented by the Ministry of Social Affairs, Children and the Family to disseminate and raise awareness of the Convention and the translation of the Convention into four national languages. The Committee is nonetheless concerned about the non-publication of the Convention in the Official Gazette and the lack of information on court proceedings in which provisions of the Convention have been directly invoked or applied, which indicates a continuing lack of awareness among women, the judiciary and the legal profession about the rights of women under the Convention and the Committee’s general recommendations, the inclusion of the Convention in the initial professional training for judges notwithstanding.
11. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Further strengthen its efforts to disseminate information on the Convention and ensure that women, including those in rural areas, have access to such information;
(b) Complete the process of publishing the Convention in the Official Gazette;
(c) Ensure that the Convention and the Committee’s general recommendations are made an integral part of training programmes for lawyers, judges, prosecutors, police officers and other law enforcement officials, with a view to enabling them to apply the provisions of the Convention directly and interpret national legal provisions in the light of the Convention.
Definition of discrimination
12. The Committee notes the information provided on the draft act on violence against women, which includes a definition of discrimination in compliance with articles 1 and 2 of the Convention (CEDAW/C/MRT/Q/2-3/Add.1, para. 4). Nonetheless, it remains concerned at the delay in adopting such a definition, notwithstanding the recommendations on this matter made by the Committee in 2007 (CEDAW/C/MRT/CO/1, para. 14). The Committee considers that failure to adopt such a definition limits the possibility of the State party identifying and addressing de facto discrimination against women.
13. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Accelerate the adoption of a definition of discrimination against women that includes direct and indirect discrimination, as defined in articles 1 and 2 of the Convention, in addition to multiple discrimination, and explicitly prohibit discrimination against women;
(b) Complete the process of establishing a women’s rights observatory that would contribute to monitoring the situation of women throughout the country, such as by identifying de facto discrimination faced by women and the measures to tackle such discrimination.
14. While welcoming the legislative reforms undertaken by the State party to repeal discriminatory provisions of the Labour Code, the Committee is concerned that other laws continue to discriminate against women, including provisions of the Penal Code and several provisions of the Nationality Code and the Personal Status Code in areas relating to transmission of nationality to children, marriage and family relations.
15. The Committee calls upon the State party to establish a legal reform process aimed at amending or repealing discriminatory legislation, including the discriminatory provisions of its penal, personal status and nationality codes. The Committee also recommends that the State party implement, without delay and within a clear time frame, the recommendations formulated by the National Human Rights Commission following its study of the implementation of the Personal Status Code.
Access to justice
16. The Committee takes note of the information provided by the State party on the provision of legal aid to women and legal counselling by pro bono practitioners. It remains concerned, however, about the lack of effective judicial remedies for women who are victims of various forms of violence and harmful practices. It also notes with concern the lack of training for judges, prosecutors and lawyers on women’s rights and gender sensitivities. While noting the information about the role of conciliators (mouslihines) in the State party, the Committee is concerned that access to justice is limited when a statement of conciliation has been issued, preventing women from gaining access to the mechanisms provided by the regular justice system.
17. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Ensure the provision of adequate financial resources and capacity-building programmes enabling the National Human Rights Commission to provide legal assistance to women;
(b) Establish expeditious legal remedies that are accessible to women claiming their rights under the Convention, disseminate information on available remedies to women and encourage women to file complaints rather than opting for mediation;
(c) Provide systematic training to judges, prosecutors and lawyers on women’s rights and access to justice.
National machinery for the advancement of women
18. The Committee remains concerned about the lack of information on the human and financial resources and capacity of the Ministry of Social Affairs, Children and the Family concerning the promotion and protection of women’s rights. The Committee regrets that a national gender strategy has yet to be adopted.
19. The Committee reiterates its recommendations that the State party:
(a) Strengthen the Ministry of Social Affairs, Children and the Family by providing it with adequate human, financial and technical resources to coordinate and work effectively for the promotion of gender equality and gender mainstreaming;
(b) Adopt a national gender strategy as a matter of priority and invite relevant stakeholders to cooperate in implementing its various components.
Temporary special measures
20. The Committee welcomes the system of quotas adopted by the State party to increase the political participation of women, in addition to the focus in the poverty reduction strategy on the situation of women. It is nonetheless concerned about the absence of temporary special measures as a systematic component to accelerate substantive equality of women and men in all areas of the Convention and the lack of understanding by the authorities and society in general about the scope and importance of temporary special measures, as defined in the Committee’s general recommendation No. 25 on the subject.
21. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Implement temporary special measures such as quotas, preferential treatment, outreach and support programmes for women and strategies to promote substantive equality of women and men, in consultation with various stakeholders, including women parliamentarians, the various municipal councils and women’s organizations in urban and rural areas;
(b) Disseminate information among all branches of the Government about the scope of temporary special measures, such as the quota system in gaining access to public positions or social services, preferential treatment, outreach and support programmes, as defined in article 4 (1) of the Convention and the Committee’s general recommendation No. 25, and the need to use such measures to overcome discrimination against women in areas such as employment and participation in economic, public and political life.
Stereotypes and harmful practices
22. The Committee is highly concerned at the persistence of deeply rooted gender stereotypes, in addition to practices that are harmful to women, such as female genital mutilation, forced feeding, child and forced marriages and sexual harassment. It regrets the absence of a strategy to combat stereotypes through education, awareness-raising campaigns, including through the media, and legislation prohibiting such practices. The Committee notes with concern that women are mainly seen as caregivers.
23. The Committee calls upon the State party:
(a) To adopt strategies, such as dialogues and forums held in society in general, including schools and religious establishments, and among political leaders on the elimination of stereotypes and harmful practices against women, and to establish a baseline and clear indicators to measure the progress and results;
(b) To set up a system of monitoring and periodic reporting on harmful practices to enable the authorities to focus awareness-raising activities on specific areas or specific groups of the population throughout the country;
(c) To strengthen measures to engage the media and non-governmental organizations in combating negative stereotypes and social attitudes towards women, in particular in rural areas and among women in disadvantaged groups.
Female genital mutilation
24. The Committee deeply regrets that the practice of female genital mutilation remains widespread in the State party in the absence of legal measures and policies for effective prevention and protection. The Committee notes with concern that the adoption of legislation to address the practice has been delayed and that there remains no clear commitment by the authorities to advancing the decision-making process relating to the adoption of the bill. The Committee is deeply concerned by the absence of prosecutions and convictions of practitioners of female genital mutilation under article 12 of the order on judicial protection of children.
25. The Committee urges the State party:
(a) To expedite the adoption of legislation criminalizing female genital mutilation and to address its harmful consequences for the lives of women;
(b) To raise the awareness of health practitioners regarding female genital mutilation and the remedies and assistance available to victims, including psychological counselling;
(c) To amend its legislation on the judicial protection of children in order to prosecute practitioners whenever female genital mutilation occurs;
(d) To strengthen efforts to raise awareness of the negative impact of female genital mutilation on the lives of women and recognize it as a human rights violation;
(e) To provide alternative means of livelihood for practitioners of female genital mutilation as a source of alternative income.
Violence against women
26. The Committee is deeply concerned about the:
(a) Various forms of violence (sexual, physical and psychological) that women, including refugee, returnee and asylum-seeking women, face in the State party, in the absence of mechanisms of redress and comprehensive legislation and policies to tackle violence against women;
(b) Absence of a definition of rape as a criminal offence in the Criminal Code, the lack of information on prosecutions and convictions of perpetrators and the practice of accusing women who are victims of rape of adultery (zina);
(c) Absence of a mechanism to collect information on the incidence of violence against women;
(d) Fact that assistance for women who are victims of violence relies mainly on initiatives by civil society organizations, especially women’s non-governmental organizations.
27. In line with its general recommendation No. 19 on violence against women, the Committee urges the State party:
(a) To complete the adoption of a law on violence against women and a national action plan on violence against women and girls, covering physical, psychological and sexual violence, having set a time frame for doing so;
(b) To define rape as a criminal offence in the Criminal Code in line with international human rights standards;
(c) To strengthen efforts to investigate, prosecute and punish incidents of violence against women, in both the private and public spheres, and to instruct public prosecutors to refrain from prosecuting women who are victims of rape for adultery (zina);
(d) To instruct public prosecutors, judicial authorities and mediators to systematically register cases of violence against women;
(e) To ensure that assistance and remedies are available and accessible to all women who are victims, including rural women and refugee, returnee and asylum-seeking women.
Trafficking in women and exploitation of prostitution
28. While noting that the law of the State party criminalizes sex tourism, pornography and paedophilia, the Committee remains concerned about the absence of a comprehensive policy framework to prevent trafficking in women and of measures to protect victims. The Committee notes with concern the absence of a system to gather information on trafficking in women and girls for purposes of sexual exploitation and forced labour, as well as to identify women at risk of being trafficked. While noting the adoption by the State party of a road map to combat the legacy of slavery, the Committee is concerned that the coordination bodies have yet to be appointed and that specific measures to implement the road map are lacking. The Committee is also concerned about the criminalization of women engaged in prostitution in the State party, the lack of measures taken to tackle the root causes of prostitution and the tendency to expel foreign women who have repeatedly been arrested for prostitution.
29. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Adopt comprehensive legislation and policies aimed at combating all forms of trafficking, which must endorse measures to prevent trafficking, including early warning systems, identification, prosecution and conviction of perpetrators and protection for girls and women who are victims through psychosocial support and legal aid;
(b) Assess the situation of trafficking in the country with the aim of establishing a baseline of the situation in order to take measures to tackle the phenomenon;
(c) Establish partnerships with international organizations and civil society stakeholders to systematically collect information on trafficking in women and girls in the country;
(d) Develop international, bilateral, regional or multilateral cooperation, in particular with countries in the region, to address trafficking;
(e) Set up mechanisms to coordinate and monitor the implementation of the road map to combat the legacy of slavery, within a specific time frame, and allocate sufficient human and financial resources therefor;
(f) Implement measures aimed at preventing exploitation of prostitution and carry out programmes to promote the effective participation of women in society;
(g) Address the root causes of trafficking and prostitution and develop reintegration programmes for women and girls in prostitution, including alternative income-generating opportunities.
Participation in political and public life
30. The Committee welcomes the increasing percentage of women in the parliament, the introduction of quotas for women’s representation in public office, the financial benefits for political parties that nominate more women than required by the quota and the fact that seats on municipal councils are reserved for women. It remains concerned, however, about the lack of economic support for women candidates in elections and about the low number of women at the ministerial level, the regional level (wilayas), the communal level, in the foreign service and in the judiciary. The Committee notes with concern that many legislative initiatives benefiting women are yet to be adopted, which shows a need to further strengthen the role and visibility of women in politics.
31. The Committee recommends that the State party continue to improve the legal framework for the inclusion of women in political life by adopting measures providing for parity in gender representation in legislative bodies. It also recommends that the State party establish programmes to provide financial resources and technical advice for women who aim to stand for public positions. It further recommends that the State party adopt a quota system for the appointment of women to the Cabinet, foreign service positions and the judiciary and provide disaggregated data on the representation of women at those levels.
32. The Committee is concerned about provisions in the Nationality Code that deny Mauritanian women the right on an equal basis with men to transmit their nationality to their children if the father is unknown or is a foreign spouse of a Mauritanian mother. The Committee regrets that public debates on the Nationality Code have not resulted in the amendment of those discriminatory provisions.
33. The Committee calls upon the State party to amend the Nationality Code to bring it into line with article 9 of the Convention and to enable Mauritanian women to transmit their nationality to their children and their foreign spouse on an equal basis with Mauritanian men. The Committee further recommends that the State party consider acceding to the 1954 Convention relating to the Status of Stateless Persons and the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness.
34. While noting that primary education is compulsory for all children under 15 years of age in the State party, the Committee remains concerned about the:
(a) High illiteracy rate of women compared with that of men (53 and 33 per cent, respectively);
(b) Marginalization of non-Arab and rural girls in the education system;
(c) Persistence of factors causing girls to drop out of school, such as early marriage, the poor quality of education, the lack of adequate infrastructure and roads to gain access to schools in rural areas and the engagement of girls and women in domestic tasks;
(d) Risk of sexual harassment and abuse by teachers in schools;
(e) Need to improve sexual and reproductive health and rights education for all levels of the education system;
(f) Limited access of girls and women to higher levels of education and stereotypes associating them with careers in the social disciplines rather than science, mathematics, technology or engineering.
35. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Strengthen its adult literacy programmes, especially for non-Arab women, Afro-Mauritanian women and women living in rural areas, and adopt measurable indicators and time frames for the assessment of progress;
(b) Adopt measures to reduce the rate at which girls are dropping out of school owing to, among other things, engagement in domestic work, early marriage and early pregnancy, including by raising awareness among parents, communities, teachers, religious leaders and public officials about the importance of education for women and girls to enabling them to gain access to paid employment in the formal workforce;
(c) Ensure adequate support, such as school transport, and economic assistance for girls in remote areas to facilitate their access to school;
(d) Adopt preventive strategies to combat the risk of sexual harassment and abuse of girls at school and ensure that perpetrators are punished;
(e) Encourage women and girls to choose non-traditional fields of education and careers, such as technical and vocational education and training in traditionally male-dominated areas, including technology and engineering, to broaden career options and occupational choices;
(f) Institute age-appropriate education on sexual and reproductive health and rights and responsible sexual behaviour at all levels of the education system.
36. The Committee welcomes the provisions of the Labour Code recognizing the right of women to collective bargaining and maternity protection. It is nonetheless concerned about the:
(a) Extremely low participation of women in the labour market (12.4 per cent), affecting young women in particular;
(b) High percentage of women who are self-employed or work in the informal sector, including in agriculture, food processing, sewing and in domestic service, where they are not protected by labour laws and social security;
(c) Underrepresentation of women, in particular those from ethnic minorities, in decision-making and senior positions in the public and private sectors;
(d) Vulnerability of women to sexual harassment in the workplace, especially in domestic work not subject to labour inspections;
(e) Exploitation of girls in child labour under slave-like conditions, in particular in the south of the country.
37. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Adopt comprehensive measures, including temporary special measures, capacity-building programmes aimed at creating job opportunities and on-the-job training for women, in particular young women, and establish childcare facilities and other services to help women and men to reconcile professional and family life;
(b) Design and implement public policies to extend social protection coverage to the informal economy and self-employment;
(c) Adopt a quota system in the public and private sectors to promote the appointment of women, including women from ethnic minorities, to senior and decision-making positions. Quotas should be accompanied by opportunities for training (in leadership skills) for women and monitored by the competent labour inspectorates;
(d) Promote the participation of women in traditionally male-dominated careers through awareness-raising and specific job training and qualification programmes;
(e) Implement the recommendations of the International Labour Organization concerning the adoption of a legal instrument prohibiting sexual harassment in the workplace and establish mechanisms to address such harassment, including gender counsellors and complaint procedures for victims, respecting the principle of confidentiality;
(f) Fully dismantle the caste-based system of enslaving women in domestic work and thereby raise the dignity of women domestic workers, ensure that women domestic workers have access to effective complaint procedures and redress and consider ratifying the Domestic Workers Convention, 2011 (No. 189), of the International Labour Organization;
(g) Monitor the situation of girls and women in domestic work through increased inspections and impose fines on employers found at fault.
38. The Committee takes note of the measures adopted by the State party to reduce maternal and child mortality, in particular the allocation of obstetrical packages for women. It also welcomes the information provided concerning a special programme on sexual and reproductive health that covers a wide range of sexual and reproductive health services. The Committee notes with concern, however, the delay in approving the bill on reproductive health. It also regrets the absence of updated information on health indicators and on the percentage of women, especially those in remote areas and those belonging to ethnic and linguistic minorities, benefiting from the various components of the programme and having effective access to sexual and reproductive health services. Lastly, the Committee is concerned that abortion is criminalized in the State party, even in cases of incest, rape and severe foetal impairment.
39. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Further strengthen its efforts to protect the sexual and reproductive health of women, including by increasing access to safe and affordable contraceptives throughout the country and by removing barriers for women in rural areas to gaining access to family planning information and methods;
(b) Enact and effectively implement the bill on sexual and reproductive health;
(c) Establish a system to periodically collect reliable data on the number of women benefiting from the measures under the policy framework on sexual and reproductive health;
(d) Consider amending its legislation to decriminalize abortion in cases of rape, incest, risk to the life or health of the mother and severe foetal impairment, in line with the Committee’s jurisprudence.
Economic empowerment of women
40. The Committee welcomes the information provided by the State party on its system of microcredit and on the guidelines instructing bank managers and staff to accord priority to women in approving such credit. The Committee is nonetheless concerned about the limited coverage of microfinance institutions and the limited range of financial products available to accelerate the participation of women in economic life.
41. The Committee recommends that the State party continue strengthening the financial schemes available to women, paying special attention to women in rural areas. It also recommends that the State party step up its efforts under the poverty reduction strategy to implement gender-sensitive economic development programmes in rural and urban areas and to ensure the participation of women in the development of such programmes. The Committee further recommends that the State party seek innovative sources of funding and assistance to promote gender equality in the economic sphere, including in partnership with the private sector.
42. The Committee notes with concern the obstacles to women’s access to land and the resulting limited land ownership by women. In particular, it notes with concern that, under civil legislation, women cannot purchase or transfer land without authorization by a third party, generally the guardian or a male family member. It is also concerned by the precarious labour conditions of women working in rural areas, especially Haratine and Afro-Mauritanian women who are often unpaid and lack any type of social protection for themselves and their families. The Committee regrets the absence of comprehensive policies to enhance the status of rural women, in addition to the absence of an impact assessment of the National Plan of Action for Rural Women.
43. The Committee recommends that the State party amend any discriminatory provisions limiting the ownership, control and usage of land by women and adopt a public policy on land management that integrates a gender perspective. It calls upon the State party to encourage and support entrepreneurship among rural women, including by providing training on how to gain access to markets and comprehensive microcredit policies.
Disadvantaged groups of women
44. While acknowledging that the State party recognizes ethnic diversity in the Constitution, the Committee notes that that formal protection needs to be translated into practical measures to protect and promote the rights of women belonging to ethnic minorities. In particular, the Committee notes with concern the:
(a) Situation of Haratine and Afro-Mauritanian women, who are sometimes under slave-like conditions, face restrictions on access to land and live in impoverished areas of the State party with limited access to education, employment and health services;
(b) Delays in adopting a national plan of action against racial discrimination;
(c) Lack of data on the situation of refugee women in the State party.
45. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Carry out a process to monitor the condition of Haratine and
Afro-Mauritanian women in the State party and establish a procedure to identify those who remain subjected to slavery and release them from any relation with current or former masters;
(b) Establish specific programmes aimed at providing income for Haratine and Afro-Mauritanian women who are former slaves and a special social security scheme with non-contributory benefits for Haratine and
Afro-Mauritanian women in the form of a temporary special measure;
(c) Accelerate the process of adopting and implementing a national plan of action against racial discrimination, bearing in mind the importance of such a plan to preventing ethnic conflicts in the State party;
(d) Monitor the situation of refugee women, in partnership with relevant international organizations, with a view to identifying their protection needs and promoting their participation in society.
Marriage and family relations
46. The Committee is concerned about discriminatory provisions in the Personal Status Code regarding the authorization of marriages of girls under 18 years of age by their guardians, the exclusive authority of the husband in family-related matters, the dissolution of marriage at the will of the husband only and polygamy.
47. The Committee calls upon the State party to follow up on the recommendations by various international bodies concerning the need to amend the Personal Status Code to bring it into line with the State party’s international human rights obligations. In reviewing its legislation, the State party should take into consideration the Committee’s general recommendation No. 29 on article 16 of the Convention on economic consequences of marriage, family relations and their dissolution.
Optional Protocol and amendment to article 20 (1) of the Convention
48. The Committee encourages the State party to ratify the Optional Protocol and to accept, as soon as possible, the amendment to article 20 (1) of the Convention concerning the meeting time of the Committee.
Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action
49. The Committee calls upon the State party to use the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action in its efforts to implement the provisions of the Convention.
Millennium Development Goals and the post-2015 development framework
50. The Committee calls for the integration of a gender perspective, in accordance with the provisions of the Convention, into all efforts aimed at the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and into the post-2015 development framework.
51. The Committee recalls the obligation of the State party to systematically and continuously implement the provisions of the Convention. 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 that the present concluding observations be disseminated in a timely manner, in the official language of the State party, to the relevant State institutions at all levels (national, regional and 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 employers’ associations, trade unions, human rights and women’s organizations, universities, research institutions and the media. It recommends that the present 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, the Optional Protocol and relevant jurisprudence, in addition to the Committee’s general recommendations, to all stakeholders.
52. The Committee recommends that the State party consider seeking international assistance and avail itself of technical assistance in the development and implementation of 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.
Follow-up to the concluding observations
53. The Committee requests the State party to provide, within two years, written information on the steps taken to implement the recommendations contained in paragraphs 25 and 45 above.
Preparation of the next report
54. The Committee invites the State party to submit its fourth periodic report in July 2018.
55. 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/MC/2006/3 and Corr.1).