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HOME  > Past issues  > 2019 June 5 - 11  > Rally held to press government to ratify Optional Protocol to CEDAW
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2019 June 5 - 11 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Rally held to press government to ratify Optional Protocol to CEDAW

June 5, 2019

Seeking to push the Japanese government to quickly ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), a rally took place on June 4 in the Upper House members’ office building.

The Optional Protocol, as a treaty that supplements the Convention, stipulates the individual complaint procedures.

The rally was hosted by a civil group working to realize the full implementation of the CEDAW convention, “OPCEDAW Action” which consists of 46 women’s groups.

Group’s co-leader Asakura Mutsuko, who is also a Waseda University professor emeritus, stressed that the ratification of the Optional Protocol will contribute to ensuring the effectiveness of the CEDAW and lead to the creation of a gender equal society. She pointed out that the government for the past two decades repeatedly claimed that the ratification is on its discussion agenda. “The government has had enough time for discussion, so it is about time to proceed to approve the protocol,” she added.

Co-leader Yuzuki Yasuko emphasized the need to take various actions such as lobbying lawmakers at the national and local levels and petitioning local assemblies to adopt pro-OP statements. Citing that the UN committee on the CEDAW will review a Japanese government report on the implementation of the Convention in 2021 at the earliest, Yuzuki said that it is necessary to strengthen public movements in order to push the government to ratify the optional protocol by 2021.

Along with five Japanese Communist Party parliamentarians, nine lawmakers from the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan, the Democratic Party for the People, the Social Democratic Party, and the Upper House parliamentary group “Okinawa Whirlwind” attended the rally.

They received 52,184 petition signatures calling for an early ratification of the OP-CEDAW. The 14 lawmakers delivered speeches in solidarity and expressed their determination to work hard to have the government ratify the protocol.

Past related articles:
> Japanese NGOs pushing gov't to end gender inequality [February 9, 2019]
> Cross-party lawmakers and NGOs rally for early ratification of optional protocol for gender equality [May 25, 2017]
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