CEDAW in Kyrgyzstan: A Movement to Justice
More than 200 representatives of government,  the Supreme Court, Ombudsman institute, civil society, international organizations got together for CEDAW 30th Anniversary celebration event in the Kyrgyz Russian Drama Theater.  The celebration took part in the UN International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and was an official launch of the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence.
The event was called "CEDAW in Kyrgyzstan: a movement to justice" had several objectives: to increase awareness about Kyrgyzstan's progress in de-facto protection of women’s rights, to acknowledge the achievements of the country's most active women's rights advocates and to showcase the work of the UNIFEM's CEDAW anniversary community art project.

During the event, there were a number of brief presentations about the status of women in Kyrgyzstan, progress in the country's implementation of the CEDAW Concluding Recommendations, and a discussion on current and planned projects related to CEDAW. The presentations were followed by an awards ceremony to recognize the authors of the six winning stories from the "Stories of CEDAW" competition. Representatives from civil society organizations and women activists who were nominated for awards as a result of the nation- wide competition “The most active gender and CEDAW advocates” also receive certificates of appreciation signed by Ines Alberdi, UNIFEM Executive Director, at the event.

Finally, a representative group of the 165 women who created the CEDAW anniversary quilt present it as a gift to the Chairperson of the Supreme Court, as a symbol of their faith in the rule of law.  

"CEDAW in Kyrgyzstan: a movement to justice" is a UNIFEM-supported community art project that was carried out in partnership with various national women's NGOs. It brought together 165 marginalised Kyrgyz women, such as migrants, Afghan refugees, disabled, rural women, girls orphans, victims of bride kidnapping, lesbians, transgender and others,  to make a CEDAW anniversary quilt. The quilt consists of seventeen panels and decorative elements, which depict the women's stories of discrimination and rights abuses. This community art project complements the formal reporting process on CEDAW, as it creates a platform for marginalised women who might otherwise lack voice in political processes to creatively express what they want to say about their own experiences.

The celebration event also hosted photo exhibitions. One represented historic photos of women's Activism during the pre-soviet and soviet times. Another exhibition presented the photos of Jackie Dewe Mathews, photographer from the Great Britain, who investigated, through documentary photography, the increasing occurrence of bride kidnapping and the wider issues of domestic violence and women’s rights in Kyrgyzstan.

In addition, the women's NGOs from all over the country were provided with an opportunity to present the information about their activities and achievements, distribute the information materials and sell the handicrafts.
Sponsored by: UN GTG, in cooperation with the Kyrgyz Government, non-government and international organizations (Soros Foundation, EC Delegation in Kyrgyzstan and Freedom House).

Contact: Anastasia Divinskaya, UNIFEM Gender Adviser to UN RC
[email protected], +996 (312) 611 213 or 611 211, +996 (312) 611 217/18 (fax)
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