Committee on the Elimination of
Discrimination against Women
Concluding observations on the sixth periodic report of Equatorial Guinea , adopted by the Committee at its fifty-third session (1-19 October 2012)
1.The Committee considered the sixth periodic report of Equatorial Guinea (CEDAW/C/GNQ/6) at its 1077th and 1078th meetings on 5 October 2012 (CEDAW/C/SR.1077 and 1078). The Committee’s list of issues and questions are contained in CEDAW/C/GNQ/Q/6, and the responses of the Government of Equatorial Guinea are contained in CEDAW/C/GNQ/Q/6/Add.1.
2.The Committee appreciates that the State party submitted it sixth periodic report although it did not follow the reporting guidelines and was overdue. It also expresses its appreciation to the State party for its written replies to the list of issues and questions raised by its pre-session working group although they were not comprehensive. It welcomes the oral presentation of the delegation.
3.The Committee commends the State party for its high level delegation, which was headed by Mr. Alfonso Nsue Mokuy, Deputy Prime Minister, which included the Minister of Social Affairs and the Status of Women and representatives from the General Directorate of Human Rights as well as a representative from the Permanent Mission to the United Nations in Geneva. The Committee, however, regrets that no answers were provided to some of the questions raised, and that some of the answers provided were not sufficiently clear, precise or detailed.
4.The Committee notes with appreciation the adoption of Law No. 3/2005 on the prevention and combat of the transmission of STDs and HIV/SIDA.
5.The Committee welcomes the 2008 “No to violence against women in Equatorial Guinea” campaign as well as the establishment of the Fund for Social Development (FDS), which prioritizes women’s access to health-care services.
6.The Committee commends the State party for its ratification of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on 16 October 2009.
C.Principal areas of concern and recommendations
7. The Committee recalls the obligation of the State party to systematically and continuously implement all the provisions of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women and views the concerns and recommendations identified in the present concluding observations as requiring the priority attention of the State party between now and the submission of the next periodic report. Consequently, the Committee urges the State party to focus on those areas in its implementation activities and to report on the actions taken and results achieved in its next periodic report. The Committee calls upon the State party to submit the present concluding observations to all relevant ministries, to the National Congress and to the judiciary, so as to ensure their full implementation.
8. While reaffirming that the Government has the primary responsibility and is particularly accountable for the full implementation of the obligations of the State party under the Convention, the Committee stresses that the Convention is binding on all branches of the State apparatus and invites the State party to encourage the Parliament, in line with its procedures, where appropriate, to take the necessary steps with regard to the implementation of the present concluding observations between now and the State party’s next reporting process under the Convention.
Visibility of the Convention and the Optional Protocol
9.The Committee is concerned that despite the State party’s ratification of the Convention in 1984, it has not yet received the necessary degree of visibility and importance, and has not therefore been regularly used, in conjunction with the Committee’s general recommendations, as the central legal basis for measures, including legislation, aimed at the elimination of discrimination against women and the promotion of gender equality in the State party. It is also concerned at the general lack of awareness of the Convention and its Optional Protocol at all levels of the Government. It is further concerned that women themselves are not aware of their rights under the Convention, or of the complaints procedure under the Optional Protocol, and thus lack the necessary information to claim their rights.
10. The Committee urges the State to:
(a) Take the necessary steps to ensure the adequate dissemination and understanding of the provisions of the Convention and the Committee’s general recommendations among all Government ministries, parliamentarians, the judiciary, law enforcement officers, and community leaders, so as to create awareness of women’s human rights and use them as the basis for measures aiming at the elimination of discrimination against women;
(b) Take all appropriate measures to enhance women’s awareness of their rights and the means to enforce them, including through providing women with information on the Convention and the Optional Protocol.
Obligations under the Convention
11.The Committee reiterates its concern about the State party’s limited understanding of its obligations under the Convention. It expresses its concern about the State party’s lack of familiarity with the differences between formal and substantive equality between men and women and the consequent lack of progress in achieving women’s substantive equality with men in all areas covered by the Convention.
12. The Committee urges the State party to take all appropriate measures to be fully familiarized with the range of obligations it has agreed to comply with when ratifying the Convention, as explained in the Committee’s g eneral r ecommendation No. 28 (2010) and to take measures to eliminate discrimination against women and to ensure women’s substantive equality with men in all areas covered by the Convention.
13.The Committee takes note of the State party’s constitutional reform (2011) and is concerned that no law on gender equality has yet been elaborated and adopted, including a definition of discrimination, in line with article 1 of the Convention. It is concerned at the lack of assessments to identify the gaps in the national legislation to protect women’s rights and ensure gender equality, in conformity with the Convention. It is further concerned at the long delays in the adoption of the Comprehensive Protection Bill to Prevent, Punish and Eliminate Violence against Women, the draft Personal and Family Code as well of the Bill on Customary Marriages. It also expresses its concern at the unwillingness of the State party to further elaborate during the dialogue on the scheduled time frame to adopt these bills as well as on their specific content.
14. The Committee calls upon the State party to:
( a) Expedite the elaboration and adoption of a Law on Gender Equality which includes a definition and prohibition of discrimination against women, in line with articles 1 and 2 of the Convention;
(b) Conduct an assessment of its national legislation to identify the gaps in the protection of women’s rights and gender equality in order to bring it in line with the provisions of the Convention;
(c ) Establish a clear time frame to revise or adopt the necessary laws and in particular adopt the Comprehensive Protection Bill to Prevent, Punish and Eliminate Violence against Women, the draft Personal and Family Code and the Bill on Customary Marriages.
Legal complaint mechanisms
15.The Committee welcomes that the district delegations of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Status of Women (MINASPROM) offer legal advice and mediation services to women victims of discrimination and domestic violence. However, it is concerned at the lack of legal complaints mechanisms for women to report cases of discrimination.
16. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Establish legal complaints mechanisms and ensure that women have easy and affordable access to these complaints mechanisms to report discrimination and violations of their rights;
(b) Guarantee women’s effective access to justice, including through the provision of legal aid where relevant;
(c) Ensure that the Convention and its Optional Protocol are made an integral part of legal education and the training of judicial officers, including judges, lawyers and prosecutors, so as to firmly establish in the country a legal culture supportive of women’s equality and non-discrimination.
National machinery for the advancement of women
17.The Committee is concerned that despite having in place a national machinery for the advancement of women and a Multisectoral National Action Plan on the Status of Women and Gender Equality (2005-2015), the full development and advancement of women is not a priority in the State party. It is further concerned at the lack of a specific gender equality policy aiming, inter alia, at integrating a gender perspective in those policies and programmes impacting women’s enjoyment of their rights. It expresses its concern at the limited technical capacity within the Ministry of Social Affairs and the Status of Women and its provincial and district delegations on gender equality and women’s rights.
18. The Committee recommends that the State party:
( a) Prioritize the elaboration and adoption of a comprehensive, result-oriented gender-equality policy and a related plan of action with specific indicators and targets, which should include an effective strategy on gender equality based on the Convention, the Committee’s general recommendations and the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, with the involvement of all relevant bodies of the State apparatus and in consultation with relevant international organizations and non-governmental organizations;
( b) Strengthen the capacity of the Ministry of Social Affairs and the Status of Women (MINASPROM) and provide it with sufficient human, technical and financial resources to adequately execute its mandate and increase its effectiveness in formulating, executing, providing advice on, coordinating and overseeing the preparation and implementation of laws and policy measures in the field of gender equality.
19.The Committee is concerned at the absence of representatives of civil society during the consideration of the State party’s report. It is further concerned at the legal and administrative obstacles for the creation of women’s associations and preconditions to collaborate with MINASPROM. It regrets that the State party does not avail itself fully of the contribution of non-governmental organizations to the advancement of women and the social and economic development of the country.
20. The Committee urges the State party to involve non-governmental organizations, in particular women’s association in the design and implementation of policies, programmes and measures aiming at the advancement of women in all areas covered by the Convention as well as in the reporting process to the Committee.
Temporary special measures
21.The Committee is concerned at the State party’s lack of understanding of the nature, purpose of and need for temporary special measures to accelerate women’s substantive equality with men. It regrets that, except for the education field, no temporary special measures have been adopted so far in the State party.
22. The Committee urges the State party to establish a legislative basis for the adoption of temporary special measures, in accordance with article 4, paragraph 1, of the Convention and the Committee’s general recommendation No. 25 (2004), and apply them in areas where necessary to accelerate women’s substantive equality with men, in particular to increase the participation of women in political decision-making positions, the judiciary and the civil service. It also recommends the adoption of temporary special measures to protect disadvantaged groups of women and promote their participation in all areas covered by the Convention.
Stereotypes and harmful practices
23.The Committee regrets the limited efforts aiming at eliminating gender stereotypes and harmful practices in the State party. It expresses its deep concern at the persistence of patriarchal attitudes and deep-rooted stereotypes concerning the roles and responsibilities of women and men in the family and society. It notes that such discriminatory attitudes and stereotypes constitute serious obstacles to women’s enjoyment of their rights, such as equal participation with men in decisions regarding family matters. It also expresses its serious concern about the persistence of entrenched harmful practices, such as forced and early marriages, levirate and mistreatment of widows, dowry-related violence and polygamy in the State party.
24. The Committee urges the State party to:
(a) Put in place a comprehensive strategy to eliminate harmful practices and stereotypes that discriminate against women, in conformity with article 2, and specifically 2 (f), and article 5 (a) of the Convention. Such strategy should include concerted efforts, in a clear time frame and in collaboration with civil society, to educate and raise awareness about this subject, targeting women and men at all levels of society, and should involve the school system and the media;
(b) Monitor and review the measures taken in order to assess their impact and to take appropriate action, and include in its next report clear information on this issue.
Violence against women
25.The Committee regrets that the State party has neglected the adoption of specific legislation, policies and programmes to address all forms violence against women. It also regrets the lack of information about the extent of and manifestations of violence against women in the State party. It is concerned at the absence of accurate and updated data on cases of gender-based violence reported as well as at the lack of information on the number of investigations, prosecutions and punishment of perpetrators of violence against women, including domestic and sexual violence. It is also concerned about the absence of information with respect to the availability of social support services, including shelters for victims.
26. Recalling its g eneral r ecommendation No. 19 (1992) on violence against women, the Committee urges the State party to:
( a) Expedite the adoption of the Comprehensive Protection Bill to Prevent, Punish and Eliminate Violence against Women and ensure strict enforcement;
( b) Develop a national strategic action plan for the prevention, protection and punishment of violence against women and, accordingly, revise and implement the Multisectoral Programme to combat gender-based violence;
( c) Review and amend the relevant sections of its Criminal Code and its criminal procedural rules to fully address all forms violence against women, including by criminalizing marital rape with no preconditions;
( d) Encourage reporting of domestic and sexual violence against women and girls and ensure that all such reports are effectively investigated and that perpetrators are prosecuted and punished;
( e) Provide adequate assistance and protection to women victims of violence, in particular psychosocial rehabilitation and an adequate number of shelter facilities;
( f) Collect comprehensive statistical data on violence against women, disaggregated by sex, age and relationship between the victim and perpetrators, including data on the number of complaints, prosecutions and convictions, and on the sentences imposed on perpetrators of sexual and gender-based violence and include such data in its next report;
( g) Provide comprehensive training on combating violence against women, including domestic and sexual violence, for relevant professionals, including targeted training for judges, prosecutors, lawyers and police officers and training for health professionals on standardized procedures for dealing with victims of violence in a gender-sensitive manner.
Trafficking and exploitation of prostitution
27.The Committee notes the adoption of Law No. 1/2004 on Smuggling of Migrants and Trafficking in Persons; however, it is concerned at its insufficient implementation. It is also concerned that the oil boom has increased the phenomenon of trafficking in persons for the purposes of employment and sexual exploitation. It expresses its concern at the lack of information about the extent of the phenomenon of trafficking. It expresses its deep concern about the reported steady increase of the exploitation of prostitution and it regrets that the State party has not yet adopted a regulatory framework and has not devoted adequate human and financial resources to comprehensively address the exploitation of prostitution.
28. The Committee recommends that the State party:
( a) Ensure the effective enforcement of Law No. 1/2004; conduct an assessment study of the extent of the phenomenon and develop and implement a national plan on trafficking in persons with a result-oriented approach, including specific indicators and targets, in line with the Convention and the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime ( Palermo Protocol ) ;
( b) Adopt a regulatory framework to combat the exploitation of prostitution, as well as measures aimed at discouraging ma le demand for prostitution;
( c) Address the root causes of prostitution including poverty and take measures to provide women with economic alternatives to prostitution as well as assistance and rehabilitation for women and girls exploited in prostitution.
Participation in political and public life
29.While taking note that as a result of the constitutional reform (2011) the State party is committed to adopting measures to increase the participation of women in political and public life (art. 13.2 Constitution), the Committee remains concerned at the low representation of women in politics as well as in key positions in the judiciary and in the public administration, including the foreign service.
30 . The Committee urges the State party to:
( a) Implement article 13.2 of its Constitution without delay and take measures to increase the participation of women in political and public life, in particular in decision-making positions , for example , by adopting temporary special measures, such as quotas, in accordance with article 4, paragraph 1, of the Convention and the Committee’s general recommendation No. 25 (2004) on temporary special measures;
( b) Implement awareness-raising activities for the society as a whole about the importance of women’s participation in decision-making and develop targeted training and mentoring programmes on leadership and negotiation skills for present and potential women candidates and women holding public office.
31.The Committee is concerned about the lack of updated information on the situation of women and girls in the field of education. It is concerned that the National Literacy Programme for Women and Girls, adopted in 2008, still stands in a preparatory phase. It is concerned at the low enrolment of adolescent girls in secondary school despite efforts to increase it, such as the building of schools in all municipalities and remote areas as well as the sensitization of parents about the importance of facilitating girls’ access to education. It is further concerned that sexual harassment at school, teenage pregnancies and early marriages continue to prevent adolescent girls from finishing their secondary education. It is also concerned that the two existing centres aimed at reintegrating adolescent girls into the education system after pregnancy are private, thus limiting its access to those who can afford them.
32. The Committee urges the State party to enhance its compliance with article 10 of the Convention and to continue raising awareness of the importance of education as a human right and as the basis for the empowerment of women. To that end, it urges the State p arty to:
(a) Develop protocols for the collection of sex disaggregated data on an annual basis on core indicators including net/gross enrolment rates, enrolment ratios, attendance and dropout rates and performance;
(b) Prioritize the implementation of the National Literacy Programme for Women and Girls;
(c) Integrate gender specific concerns of women and girls, including the availability of appropriate sanitary facilities into existing and new schools ;
(d) Address the root causes of the high dropout rate of adolescent girls , such as gender stereotypes, poverty and sexual harassment in school, teenage pregnancies and early marriages by for example, adopting a policy on the readmission to school of pregnant girls and young mothers and by implementing a zero-tolerance policy to end sexual harassment in schools.
33.The Committee regrets the absence of information provided by the State party with respect to the situation of women in the formal and informal employment sectors. It is concerned at the limited understanding of the State party of its obligations under the Convention to eliminate discrimination against women in the field of employment by public and private actors. It is also concerned at the non-existence of trade unions and the non-recognition of the right to collective bargaining as mechanisms to eliminate discrimination in the State party and at the lack of detailed information about the labour legislation and its implementation mechanisms such as the Labour Inspectorate.
34. The Committee urges the State party to:
(a) Provide in its next periodic report detailed information on the situation of women in the field of employment, including the types of legal, social and other services and protections available to women who work in the formal and in the informal sectors;
(b) Fully familiarize itself with the principle of equal pay for work of equal value and implementation strategies;
(c ) Adopt policies and take all necessary measures, including temporary special measures in accordance with article 4, paragraph 1, of the Convention and the Committee’s general recommendation No. 25 (2004), with time-bound targets and indicators for achieving the substantive equality of men and women in the labour market, eliminating occupational segregation and closing the gender wage gap;
(d) Institute measures that will guarantee conformity with the ILO Convention No. 100 (1951) on Equal Remuneration, Convention No. 111 (1958) on Discrimination (Employment and Occupation), and ratify Convention No. 156 (1981) on Workers with Family Responsibilities.
35.The Committee takes note of the State party’s measures to improve women’s access to health care, including through increases in human and financial resources allocation to health services and the implementation of the Programme to Prevent Mother-to-Child HIV/AIDS transmission. However, it is concerned at the health situation of women in the State party, in particular about the high rate of teenage pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases. It is also concerned at the lack of information with respect to the rate of maternal mortality and morbidity and their causes.
36. The Committee recommends that the State party:
( a) Take all necessary measures to improve women’s access to reproductive health care and related services within the framework of the Committee’s general recommendation No. 24 (1999) on women and health;
(b) Reinforce education on sexual and reproductive health and rights targeting adolescent girls and boys, with special attention to the prevention of teenage pregnancies and the control of sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS ;
( c) Strengthen and expand efforts to increase knowledge of and access to affordable contraceptive methods throughout the country and ensure that women and girls, especially in rural areas, do not face barriers to accessing family planning information and services; and
(d) Adopt measures to reduce the incidents of maternal mortality and to raise awareness of and increase women’s access to health-care facilities and medical assistance by trained personnel, especially in rural areas and provide detailed information in its next periodic report.
Economic and social life
37.The Committee regrets the lack of information on specific measures taken to eliminate discrimination against women in areas of economic and social life such as bank loans, mortgages and other forms of financial credit. It is also concerned at the absence of clarifications with respect to the insufficient social services for women.
38. The Committee encourages the State party to take measures to ensure women’s equality with men with respect to economic and social life, in particular access to bank loans, mortgages and other forms of financial credit and provide detailed information about the impact of these measures in its next periodic report.
39.While taking note of the Self-employment Programme for Rural Women (PRAMUR), the Committee remains concerned about widespread poverty and the lack of specific strategies and measures in place or envisaged to address poverty and discrimination against rural women in their access to justice, education, health and housing, clean water and sanitation services as well as on their participation in decision-making processes at the community level. It is particularly concerned about the impact of the oil boom on the lives of rural women and regrets the lack of information in this regard in the report. The Committee is concerned that the customs and traditional practices prevalent in rural areas prevent women from inheriting or acquiring ownership of land and other property and from accessing financial credit and capital.
40. The Committee calls upon the State party to:
(a) Formulate and implement specific measures and strategies to combat women’s poverty, including effective measures to ensure rural women ’s access to justice, health-care services , education , housing, clean water and sanitation , fertile land and income-generating projects;
( b) Ensure rural women’s participation in decision-making processes at the community level;
( c) Address customs and traditional practices, which affect the full enjoyment of rural women to their right to property as well as to access credit and capital.
Disadvantaged groups of women
41.The Committee expresses its concern about the situation of women in prisons, in particular foreign women. It is also concerned at reports indicating that women inmates are extremely vulnerable to sexual harassment and sexual violence by their co-prisoners or male guardians.
42. The Committee recommends that the State party address the situation of women in prisons and protect women inmates from all forms of violence, in particular sexual harassment and sexual violence.
Marriage and family relations
43.The Committee is concerned at the existence of a dual system of law, civil and customary, which regulates marriage and family relations issues and which results in the deep and persistent discrimination against women on issues such as child custody, division of property acquired during the marriage and succession. It is concerned that women married under customary rules do not have access to civil courts to defend their rights. It is particularly concerned that the information provided suggests that the draft Personal and Family Code and the Bill on Customary Marriages are not in conformity with the Convention, for instance with respect to polygamy, the legal effects of marriages, the minimum age of marriages and the grounds for and the effects of dissolution of marriage, including child custody and inheritance rights.
44. The Committee calls upon the State party to eliminate discrimination against women in all matters relating to marriage, family relations and succession by:
( a) Revising the draft Personal and Family Code along with the Bill on Customary Marriages with the view to eliminat ing possible inconsistencies and overlapping between them and ensuring that they, inter alia, prohibit polygamy, raise the minimum age of marriage for women to 18 years, guarantee equal inheritance and succession rights to women and recognize the full legal capacity of women, in line with the Convention;
(b) Ensuring that traditional tribunals do not discriminate against women on any issues, especially those related to the dissolution of marriage and its economic consequences;
( c) Put in place judicial safeguards for traditional and civil marriages with the view to ensure non-discrimination of women.
National human rights institution
45.The Committee takes note of the recent establishment of the Ombudsman (Defensor del Pueblo) in the Constitution and it is concerned about his independence, as the Constitution states that the Ombudsman forms part of the State party’s apparatus. It is also concerned at the lack of information on the human and financial resources allocated to his office.
46. The Committee recommends that the State party:
(a) Ensure the independence of the Ombudsperson, in compliance with the p rinciples relating to the status of national institutions for the promotion and protection of human rights (Paris Principles ) and provide him with sufficient human and financial resources and a broad human rights mandate and a specific mandate on gender equality;
(b) Ensure that the composition and activities of the office of the Ombudsman are gender-sensitive.
47.While noting the information provided by the delegation with respect to the pending approval of the results of the First Health and Demographic Census and the Survey on the socio-economic conditions of women in the State party, the Committee regrets the report’s lack of statistical data disaggregated by sex, age, rural and urban area and ethnicity and recalls that the lack of such data makes it difficult to accurately assess the real situation of women in most of the areas covered by the Convention. The Committee also notes with concern that the paucity of disaggregated data impedes the State party’s own efforts to design and implement specific gender equality policies and programmes, and to evaluate their effectiveness in terms of implementing the Convention.
48. The Committee urges the State party to:
(a) Strengthen, without delay, its current system of data collection in all areas covered by the Convention in order to be able to accurately assess the real situation of women and adequately monitor evolving trends;
(b ) Use quantifiable indicators to evaluate the impact of the measures adopted and the progress achieved in the attainment of de facto equality between women and men and use these data and indicators in formulating laws, policies and programmes for the effective implementation of the Convention;
(c ) Include in its next periodic report such data, disaggregated by urban and rural area and by ethnicity, and indicate the effects of the measures taken and the results obtained in terms of the practical realization of de facto equality between women and men.
Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action
49. The Committee urges the State party, in the implementation of its obligations under the Convention, to fully utilize the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, which reinforce the provisions of the Convention, and requests the State party to include information thereon in its next periodic report.
Millennium Development Goals
50. The Committee emphasizes that full and effective implementation of the Convention is indispensable for achieving the Millennium Development Goals. It calls for the integration of a gender perspective and explicit reflection of the provisions of the Convention in all efforts aimed at the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and requests the State party to include information thereon in its next periodic report.
51. The Committee requests the wide dissemination in Equatorial Guinea of the present concluding observations in order to make the people, including Government officials, politicians, Parliamentarians and women’s and human rights organizations, aware of the steps that have been taken to ensure de jure and de facto equality of women and the further steps that are required in that regard. The Committee recommends that the dissemination extend to the local community level. The State party is encouraged to organize a series of meetings to discuss the progress achieved in the implementation of the present observations. The Committee requests the State party to disseminate widely, in particular to women’s and human rights organizations, the Committee’ s general recommendations, the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action and the outcome of the twenty-third special session of the General Assembly on the theme “Women 2000: gender equality, development and peace for the twenty-first century”.
Ratification of other treaties
52. The Committee notes that the adherence of Equatorial Guinea to the nine major international human rights instruments would enhance the enjoyment by women of their human rights and fundamental freedoms in all aspects of life. The Committee therefore encourages Equatorial Guinea to consider ratifying the treaties to which it is not yet a party, i.e., the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families; the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance; and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Follow-up to concluding observations
53. The Committee requests the State party to provide, within two years, written information on the steps undertaken to implement the recommendations contained in paragraphs 26 (a ) , ( b ) , ( e ) and ( f) and 44 (a) above.
54. The Committee recommends that the State party consider seeking cooperation and technical assistance in the development and implementation of a comprehensive programme aimed at the implementation of the above recommendations and the Convention as a whole. The Committee also calls upon the State party to continue its cooperation with specialized agencies and programmes of the United Nations system, including the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN-Women), the United Nations Statistics Division, the United Nations Development Programme, the United Nations Children’s Fund, the United Nations Population Fund, the World Health Organization, and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.
Preparation of the next report
55. The Committee requests the State party to ensure the participation of all ministries and public bodies in the preparation of its next periodic report and, at the same time, to consult a variety of women’s and human rights organizations.
56. The Committee requests the State party to respond to the concerns expressed in the present concluding observations in its next periodic report under article 18 of the Convention and invites the State party to submit its next periodic report in October 2016.
57. The Committee invites the State party to follow the harmonized guidelines on reporting under the international human rights treaties, including the guidelines on a common core document and treaty-specific documents approved at the fifth I nter- C ommittee M eeting of the human rights treaty bodies, in June 2006 (HRI/GEN/2/Rev.6, chap. I). The treaty-specific reporting guidelines adopted by the Committee at its fortieth session in January 2008 (A/63/38, part one , annex I) must be applied in conjunction with the harmonized reporting guidelines on a common core document. Together, they constitute the harmonized guidelines on reporting under the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. The treaty-specific document should be limited to 40 pages, while the common core document should not exceed 80 pages.