Legal advocacy is key in changing behaviour, policy and practice. LAW targets governments, state actors, the UN and the international community to promote change. LAW also conducts advocacy bi-laterally at the Ministerial/Ambassador level, through panel discussions and roundtables in Africa, Middle East, and Europe.
LAW undertakes high quality legal research and produces reports with practical and implementable recommendations for each of these target groups.
LAW has recently conducted advocacy on the draft Somali Sexual Offences Bill through visual materials on the contents of the Bill and the production of a documentary on the drafting of the Bill. A second video, advocating for the passage of the Bill was released in 2017 and is available to view on LAW’s homepage.
In September 2017, LAW, alongside the UK and Swedish Missions to the United Nations in Geneva, organised a panel discussion on ‘Somalia and the Women, Peace and Security Agenda’ as a side event to the 36th Session of the Human Rights Council. Around 50 people, representing more than 15 countries, attended the event, which was held the at the Palais des Nations. The panel discussed key issues around the challenges and opportunities for Somalia’s post-conflict state-building process to pursue the Women, Peace and Security Agenda (WPS Agenda). Topics included the passage of the Somali Sexual Offences Bill, the participation of women in Somali governance and what more the international community can do to assist Somali in implementing the WPS agenda.
On 19 June 2018, marking the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict, Somali Minister for Women and Human Rights Development, Her Excellency Minister Deqa Yasin Hagi Yusuf and LAW Executive Director, Antonia Mulvey spoke about the development and progress of the Somali Sexual Offences Bill, at an event hosted by the Centre for Women, Peace and Security (WPS) at London School of Economics. The event ‘Conflict-Related Sexual Violence: Strengthening legal responses in Somalia,’ chaired by WPS Director, Professor Christine Chinkin, provided insight into the challenges and opportunities of drafting the Bill and advocating for its passage.
LAW reporting includes:
- Harmonization of the Legal Systems Resolving Land Disputes in Somaliland and Puntland: Report and Recommendations, April 2016, supported by UN-Habitat;
- Accountability for sexual violence committed by militias and security forces in South Sudan, May 2016, supported by the Nuhanovic Foundation.
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