Declaration In Solidarity with Sisters from North Africa

Fourth Regional Conference for African Women in Political Leadership
Lilongwe, Malawi
November 30, 2012
We the women leaders of 18 African Countries attending the Fourth FEMNET Regional Conference on African Women in Political Leadership in Lilongwe, Malawi from November 26-28, 2012, proclaim our solidarity with our sisters in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia, during the still-evolving Arab Spring.
We denounce the atrocious human rights violations against women and women human rights defenders in these North African countries.
In light of the recent events, particularly given that we are within the Sixteen (16) days of Activism against Gender Based Violence, pledge our ongoing support to women and women human rights defenders in the ongoing struggle to not only recognize but actively implement the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other human rights commitments.
We join our sisters in Egypt to unequivocally denounce Egypt’s current Constitutional draft that allows the gross violation of minors in its article that approves child marriage. In line with international human rights commitments. we say “Leave my Baby Girl Alone!”
We condemn in the strongest terms all systems used by governments to dominate and oppress any of their citizens, whether based on gender or religion.
We stand united with our sisters across Africa and will forever support and foster leadership that seeks to partner with its people to understand their authentic needs.
All African Union Member States must strive for peaceful societies with inclusive leadership that protects rather than violates human rights especially women and children’s rights.
We call upon the women of Africa and the world over and all the men of goodwill to join us in condemning the gross violation of human rights, and in particular the violation of women and children in North Africa.
We call upon the government of Egypt to come up with a constitution that is gender sensitive and inclusive that guarantees the human rights of all citizens.

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