The Syrian Women’s Commission continues with the activities it has been carrying out in partnership with the Stabilization Support Unit in the Turkish city of Gaziantep. It held a focus group discussion under the title “Women’s constitutional and legal rights” in which it hosted Raghda Al-Zaidan, member of the drafting committee of the Constitutional Committee. In attendance were SOC’s Vice President and Head of the Syrian Women’s Commission Ruba Habboush as well as women activists operating in the liberated areas and in Turkey.
Al-Zaidan began the session with a historical overview of the emergence of women’s organizations in Syria in the twentieth century, and the major associations and clubs that were established with the aim of promoting charitable work and the spread of education.
Al-Zaidan also gave an overview on the constitutional and legal rights of Syrian women in the Syrian constitutions, and the laws that discriminate between men and women rights, such as the nationality law, penalties, personal status law, and others.
She highlighted the status of Syrian women before and after the revolution, pointing to the oppression, marginalization and exploitation that Syrian women suffered under Assad’s rule. She pointed out that the Assad regime’s brutal practices worsened following the start of the Syrian revolution as they suffered from arrest, enforced disappearance, systematic violence, displacement and deprivation of basic services as well as bearing economic and social burdens.
Al-Zaidan made it clear that Syrian women were able to prove their potential capabilities as they assumed senior political and civil positions and demand special laws that guarantee their constitutional rights. They are also keen on participating in building a state of citizenship, justice and law.
The session discussed the major needs of women and the obstacles that stand in the way of activating their role. Participants stressed the need to increase societal awareness of women’s rights and the need for their contribution to building society, enhancing their political and administrative participation, setting laws that regulate their rights and protect them from violence and abuse, and securing public space for women’s participation in public affairs.
(Source: SOC’s Media Department)