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Banjul, 24 February 2021: IHRDA and Association pour le Progrès et la Défense des Droits des Femmes au Mali (APDF) are organizing a 2-day women’s rights strategic litigation training workshop, 24-25 February 2021 in Bamako, for women and girls’ rights defenders from Mali and Senegal.

The workshop seeks to equip human rights defenders with knowledge and skills to engage in strategic litigation for cases of sexual and gender-based violence and other violations against women/girls, and to strengthen advocacy against such violations using regional human rights instruments and mechanisms.

Topics to be covered include an overview of the situation of women/girls’ rights in Mali and Senegal, regional and international normative frameworks on women/girls’ rights, women’s rights litigation in Africa, as well as the procedures and techniques to litigate before regional human rights mechanisms, notably the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (ACERWC), and the ECOWAS Court.

Participants will also discuss ways of using the legal instruments such as the Maputo Protocol, the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child, and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women to protect the rights of women/girls in their respective countries. They will as well identify strategic cases of women/girls’ rights violations which they would be working with IHRDA to take up for litigation.  

This activity comes in a context of continuous disregard for the rights of women/girls in Mali and Senegal, with an increasing need for local women’s rights defenders to adequately respond to such violations and ensure justice for persons involved.

The workshop that was opened by the Malian Minister for Human Rights is funded by Foundation for a Just Society, USA.