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STATEMENTS AND SPEECHES
Ashgabat, 14 October 2011 - I am very delighted to have the opportunity to speak today for three reasons. First, today we are celebrating 15 years of work of the National Institute for Democracy and Human Rights under the President of Turkmenistan.
Ashgabat, 1 September 2011 - Let me congratulate the faculty, students and staff of the Institute of International Relations on a new beautiful building of the Institute. Particular significance is the fact that a new educational building, which will prepare future diplomats of Turkmenistan opened on the eve of the twentieth anniversary of independence.
Ashgabat, 16 January 2010 - First of all, on behalf of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, I would like to express gratitude to His Excellency President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov for providing assistance to the people of Haiti through the United Nations.
Ashgabat, 18 November 2009 - On behalf of the United Nations Country Team in Turkmenistan, I have the great pleasure to welcome you all here at this meeting, which is dedicated to the final review of the United Nations Development Assistance Framework 2005-2009, and presentation of the strategic priorities of UN Agencies for the future.
Ashgabat, 24 October 2009 – It is a great pleasure to welcome you here this evening on the occasion of the 64th anniversary of the establishment of the United Nations.
Ashgabat, 3 July 2009 - I am happy to welcome all of you today and I would like to sincerely thank the Turkmen National Institute of Democracy and Human Rights under the President of Turkmenistan for hosting today’s conference.
Ashgabat, 5 June 2009 - It is my pleasure to be here with you today on such an important occasion. Environment Day is a globally celebrated event, on which I wish to sincerely congratulate all of you.

UN Resident Coordinatorís statement on Turkmenistanís accession to CEDAW optional protocol

Statement by Mr. Richard Young, UN Resident Coordinator in Turkmenistan, on the occasion of Turkmenistan’s accession to the CEDAW Optional Protocol 

Ashgabat, 28 April 2009

Statement by Mr. Richard Young, UN Resident Coordinator in Turkmenistan on the occasion of Turkmenistanís accession to the CEDAW Optional Protocol It is an honor for me to welcome Turkmenistan’s accession to the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). By ratifying the Optional Protocol, Turkmenistan has recognized the authority of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women – the body that monitors States parties' compliance with the Convention – to receive and consider complaints from individuals or groups within its jurisdiction.  

As is known, the CEDAW is the main international human rights document that seeks to ensure the enforcement of the human rights of women on an equal basis with men. CEDAW deals with rights including the right to vote and stand for election, equal rights to education, protection from discrimination in the workplace and equality before the law.  

The Convention was adopted in 1979 by the United Nations General Assembly and entered into force in September 1981. Turkmenistan has been a party to CEDAW since 1996. As of November 2008, 185 countries, over ninety percent of the members of the United Nations, are parties to CEDAW.  

The Convention has often been described as an ‘international bill of rights’ for women. The rights enshrined in CEDAW broadly cover many aspects of women’s lives. Rights include political participation, health, education, employment, equal rights in marriage and family relations and equality before the law. Countries that are party to CEDAW must submit reports to the CEDAW Committee at least every four years. These reports detail the measures the government has taken to comply with its obligations under the Convention. 

On 6 October 1999 the Optional Protocol to CEDAW was accepted by the UN General Assembly and opened for signature and ratification by countries that are parties to CEDAW. Under the Optional Protocol, women can make a complaint to the CEDAW Committee about alleged violation of a State Party’s obligations under CEDAW, if domestic legal options have been exhausted. Governments are required to respond to the findings of the CEDAW Committee about the complaint within six months, including information about action taken in light of the views and recommendations of the Committee. The Optional Protocol also enables the CEDAW Committee to investigate claims of serious violations of CEDAW in State Parties through an inquiry. As of November 2008, around 95 countries had become party to the Optional Protocol. The Optional Protocol will enter into force three months after lodgment of the instrument of accession.  

The United Nations’ agencies in Turkmenistan together with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights have been advocating for the accession to the CEDAW Optional Protocol by providing information and consultations to the national counterparts. We will continue to support our counterparts in the implementation of their international commitments in all areas of human rights, including those of women.

 
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