Subject: [fem-women2000 121] Women's Globalnet #135
From: lalamaziwa <>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2000 15:00:15 +0900
Seq: 121

---------------- Original message follows ----------------
 From: iwtc <>
 Date: Wed, 19 Jan 2000 11:12:29 -0800
 Subject: Women's Globalnet #135

Note from IWTC:

It has been brought to our notice that many people did not receive  IWTC 
Women's GlobalNet #135 in December 1999 and we are therefore resending 

Our apologies if you are receiving this for a second time.

IWTC Women's GlobalNet #135
Activities and Initiatives of Women Worldwide
By Anne S. Walker and Vicki Semler

December 16, 1999



1. Optional Protocol Open for Signing!

On 10 December, Human Rights Day, the Optional Protocol to the 
Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against 
Women (CEDAW) was open for signatures. The Optional Protocol is an 
important addition to CEDAW because it provides a communications 
procedure that allows individual women or groups of women to submit 
claims of violations of rights to the CEDAW Committee. It also sets up 
an inquiry procedure that enables the Committee to initiate inquiries 
into situations of grave or systemic violations of women's rights. Women 
worldwide are mobilizing to urge their governments to sign the Protocol 
as a show of political will in support of the ongoing Beijing +5 review 
process. The full text can be found online at: 

The following 23 countries signed the Optional Protocol at the Opening 
Ceremony on 10 December, 1999:  Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Chile, 
Colombia, Costa Rica, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Finland, France, 
Germany, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Mexico, 
Netherlands, Norway, Senegal, Slovenia, and Sweden.

Is your country amongst these signatories? If not, urge your government 
to sign now.

2. ICC Urgent Action Alert!

The Women's Caucus on Gender Justice, as it continues its participation 
in the negotiations on the International Criminal Court, has issued an 
urgent action alert. At stake are proposals defining crimes against 
humanity in very limiting ways that do not take into account the 
realities of women in the situations that are likely to come before the 
court. This is a step backwards, as definitions of crimes against 
humanity agreed to in previous ICC PrepComs had included crimes of 
sexual violence. The Women's Caucus requests that you contact your 
foreign and justice ministries or departments, and urge them to support 
gender issues and oppose attempts to limit the Court's ability to fully 
respond to and redress crimes committed against women. Draft letters are 
available from the Women's Caucus for Gender Justice, which can be 
contacted at <>.

For additional insights into the work of the ICC Women's Caucus for 
Gender Justice and an update on the issues under debate (from a gender 
perspective) see their new electronic journal available on-line at 

3. Gender Caucus at WTO in Seattle Issues Declaration!

A Gender Caucus met during the Third World Trade Organization (WTO) 
Ministerial Conference in Seattle, Washington, November 30 - December 3, 
to strategize approaches to ensure a gender perspective in the 
deliberations of the WTO. Protesting against a system that  places 
corporate over community and national interests, the Gender Caucus, 
representing organizations from the Global South and North, issued a 
declaration. The declaration provides a way of looking at the issues in 
three clusters:  Systemic and Implementation Issues; Agriculture; and 
General Agreement on Trade and Services. A copy of the declaration will 
be available as from Monday, November 20, 1999 at : 

4.  Primer  on WTO Available!

The Women's Environment and Development Organization (WEDO), in 
connection with its work with the WTO Gender Caucus, has just released a 
primer introducing the basic issues surrounding the WTO from a gender 
perspective. Entitled "A Gender Agenda for the World Trade Organization" 
the primer includes:  (1) decision-making and governance, (2) economic 
equity, (3) health and safety, and (4) indigenous knowledge. With a 
glossary, charts, and reference to selected web sites for further 
information, this is an excellent resource for anyone interested in 
moving forward with this important issue. Copies are free to individuals 
and groups in the Global South, and at a cost of US$2.00 (to cover 
postage) to all others. 

Another excellent introduction to the issues surrounding WTO, and with 
references to other resources, is the November l999 issue of WEDO's 
"News & Views". To receive a copy, contact: Joan Ross-Frankson, 
Communications Director, WEDO, 355 Lexington Ave., 3rd Floor, New York, 
NY 10017. Tel: (1-212) 973-0325. Fax: (1-212) 973-0335. Email: 
<>. Web site: <>

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