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Oral Statement by United Nations Watch
Agenda Item 3 ID with Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women
UN Human Rights Council, 38th Session
Delivered by Mr. Hillel Neuer, 20 June 2018
I thank you, Madam Rapporteur, for your report. You refer in paragraph 2 to your global implementation plan on violence against women. In that regard, I wish to ask: What is your methodology for deciding which countries to examine?
Based on a human rights methodology, I would think that you would make your selection based on the severity of the violations, and based on how many people are affected. And that you would exercise your full right to report on the worst abusers, even if they deny you access.
Now, based on severity, is there a reason why you did not examine Saudi Arabia, where pervasive domestic violence against women takes place in a context where guardianship laws prevent women from taking any legal decision without the approval of her male guardian; where a woman’s testimony in court is worth half that of a man, and where twelve women’s rights activists have been arrested in the past month, including activists Nouf Abdelaziz and Mayaa al-Zahrani?
Based on severity is there a reason you did not examine Iran, where domestic violence against women has doubled in the past year?
Is there a reason why you have not examined Pakistan, where the justice system protects the perpetrators of crimes against women, tribal courts sentence women to death for honor crimes, and where the high court just acquitted the man who stabbed Khadija Sidiwwui 23 times, even though the stabbing was caught on tape?
Now, based on the number of women affected, is there a reason why you have not examined China, which has one fifth of the world’s population, where forced abortions and sterilizations are estimated by the Chinese government itself to have prevented up to 400 million births? Or why you haven’t examined Russia, where the law fails to protect women from domestic violence?
I see, however, that you did visited Australia, an open society, perhaps one of the best when it comes to women, though there are problems there and everywhere, and that you did visit the Bahamas in mid-December, population 400,000.
Madam Rapporteur, based on human rights, what is your methodology? I thank you.
UN expert Dubravka Simonovic delivered the following response: