HRC 55: Centre Women and Modern World and SRI Statement to Azerbaijan UPR adoption

Published on марта 27, 2024

Outcome of the Universal Periodic Review - Azerbaijan

Thank you President,

Action Canada makes this statement on behalf of Centre Women and Modern World, and the Sexual Rights Initiative. 

We welcome the recommendations made to Azerbaijan on addressing patriarchal norms and gender stereotypes, in their various manifestations including through gender-based violence, the economic exclusion of women, and the persistence of son preference. We welcome Azerbaijan’s acceptance of recommendations calling on it to implement a robust national strategy for gender equality to eradicate these norms, attitudes and stereotypes, to undertake systematic efforts to transform the same, and to develop and operationalise a robust system to monitor its efforts. 

However, we regret that Azerbaijan noted all the recommendations pertaining to the signing and ratification of the Istanbul Convention. Violence against women is widespread in Azerbaijan and domestic violence is normalised, as violence against women is framed as a "family matter". Current legislation is flawed, the Law on Prevention of Domestic Violence (2010) lacks a legal definition of domestic violence, and mandates mandatory reconciliation and mediation procedures in cases of domestic violence under article 7.4 to “assist in the normalisation of relations between parties and the resumption of family affairs”, which leads to impunity for perpetrators. We regret that Azerbaijan noted the recommendation calling for the repeal of this article. Further, there are insufficient support services for survivors, and there continue to be barriers to access to justice.

There would be numerous benefits for women in the country if Azerbaijan acceded to the Istanbul treaty: for example Azerbaijan would have to introduce into the legislation such concepts as “psychological violence” or “forced marriage” .

We call on Azerbaijan to:

  1. Amend the Law on the Prevention of Domestic Violence to define domestic violence
  2. Repeal article 7 para 4 of the Law on the Prevention of Domestic Violence and remove the mandatory mediation and reconciliation requirement.


Thank you.