On the Occasion of the 100th International Women’s Day Celebration

Communiqué on the Occasion of the 100th

International Women’s Day Celebration

8 March 2011

The celebration of International Women’s Day is marked this year by an unprecedented social movement throughout the Arab World led mostly by women and men claiming their citizenship rights and calling for social justice and equality.

In Lebanon, and whilst we await similar winds of change, social movements and  particularly movements calling for the rights of women and for inclusive citizenship rights are still confronted by the patriarchal and confessional nature of the political system in Lebanon.  The Women’s Right to Nationality Campaign is a case in point where decision makers are arguing against the reform of nationality laws on the basis of demographic myths and fears and the difficulty of transforming and overcoming age old traditions and social norms.

However, voices challenging this patriarchal and confessional system and its implications on the lives of women and men have recently become more audible and visible.  The Women’s Right to Nationality Campaign would like to reiterate that this new and fresh social movement in Lebanon should be all embracing and go beyond political reform and call for the realization of an inclusive secular state.  This is a key demand which importance is further exacerbated by the fact that many a political and religious figure are indeed attempting to jump on the band wagon of this social movement.  It is of key importance to us that this social movement maintains a clear  and priority demand for inclusive citizenship rights for all.

The Women’s Right to Nationality Campaign endorses the call for a secular state and supports social movements seeking to transform the current patriarchal and confessional system as only this will guarantee equality and rights for all.

Beirut, 8 March 2011

On the 100th Anniversary of International Women’s Day

بيان بمناسبة الاحتفال بعيد المائة لليوم العالمي للنساء

يطل علينا الثامن من آذار هذه السنة، وعالمنا العربي يشهد حراكاً شعبياًً، يعبّر عن رغبة الشعوب العربية في التحرّر وصولاً الى تكريس حقوقها السياسية على قاعدة المواطنة الفاعلة، المساواة والعدالة الإجتماعية.

وفي لبنان، وبانتظار وصول قطار التغيير، تصطدم التحركات المطلبية، الإجتماعية والنسائية بطبيعة النظام السياسي – الطائفي الذي يغلّب المصالح الطائفية على حقوق المواطنة للنساء والرجال على حد سواء. وهذا ما تؤكده الحجج التي سيقت في وجه حملة “جنسيتي حق لي ولأسرتي” كالتعلّل بالمخاوف الطائفية والتوازنات الدميغرافية و صعوبة تغيير التقاليد والأعراف السائدة.

وفي هذا السياق، وكجزء من الحراك الشعبي والإجتماعي والسياسي المناهض للنظام الطائفي، والذي بدأت إرهاصاته بالظهور مؤخراً، تؤكد حملة “جنسيتي حق لي ولأسرتي”، على أهمية وضرورة أن يكون هذا الحراك مستندأ إلى مقاربة شاملة لا تقتصر على التغييرات السياسية فقط  بل تتعداها إلى إحقاق الدولة المدنية. وما محاولة بعض الأطراف السياسية-الطائفية لركوب موجة التغيير، سوى دليل على ضرورة التمسك بهذا المطلب، الذي يضع حقوق المواطنة الفاعلة والمساواة في أعلى سلم الأولويات.

وإذ تؤكد حملة “جنسيتي حق لي ولأسرتي” على أهمية مطلب الدولة المدنية، تعلن تأييدها ومشاركتها في التحركات الآيلة إلى تغيير النظام السياسي-الطائفي السائد وذلك ضماناً للمساواة وللحقوق.

8 آذار/مارس 2011

Communiqué à l’occasion de la 100ème édition de la Journée internationale de la femme

8 mars 2011

Cette année, un mouvement social sans précédent à travers le monde arabe commémore la Journée internationale de la femme. A la tête de ce mouvement, des hommes et des femmes revendiquant les droits à la citoyenneté et appelant  à la justice sociale et à l’égalité.

Au Liban, en attendant un air de changement similaire, des mouvements sociaux et en particulier des mouvements revendiquant les droits des femmes et les droits à une citoyenneté inclusive sont toujours confrontés à un système politique de nature patriarcale et confessionnelle. La Campagne pour le droit des femmes à la nationalité se heurte au refus des responsables politiques de réformer les lois sur la nationalité. Pour justifier leur position, ces derniers recourent aux mythes de l’équilibre démographique, la peur et les difficultés de changer et dépasser des traditions et des conventions sociales ancestrales.

Cependant, des voix se lèvent, de plus en plus audibles et visibles, contre ce système patriarcal et confessionnel pesant sur la vie des femmes et des hommes. La Campagne pour le droit des femmes à la nationalité souhaite rappeler que ce nouveau mouvement social au Liban devrait rassembler tout le monde et aller au delà de la réforme politique en demandant la réalisation d’un Etat laïc et inclusif. C’est une revendication centrale dont l’importance est d’autant plus grande que de nombreuses personnalités politiques et religieuses tentent de rattraper le coche de ce mouvement social. Il est essentiel à nos yeux que ce mouvement social maintienne sa revendication claire et prioritaire en faveur des droits à la citoyenneté inclusive pour tous.

La Campagne pour le droit des femmes à la nationalité soutient l’appel à un état laïc et encourage les mouvements sociaux qui cherchent à transformer le système patriarcal et confessionnel actuel car c’est la seule façon de garantir l’égalité et les droits pour tous.

Beyrouth, le 8 mars 2011

A l’occasion de la 100ème édition de la journée internationale de la femme

التغطية الصحفية

السفير: 8 آذار 2011

توالت أمس المواقف والبيانات الصادرة عن المؤسسات الأهلية ومؤسسات المجتمع المدني المحلية والمنظمات الدولية والفاعليات السياسية، لمناسبة العيد المئة لليوم العالمي للمرأة. فقد وزع المعتصمون أمام وزارة الداخلية في الصنائع، المحتجون على النظام الطائفي في لبنان، بيانا طالبوا فيه بتعديل المادة الأولى – الفقرة الأولى من قانون الجنسية التي تنص على انه «يعد لبنانيا كل شخص مولود من أب لبناني»، بحيث تصبح على الشكل الآتي: «يعد لبنانيا كل شخص مولود من أب لبناني أو من أم لبنانية».
وأصدرت حملة «جنسيتي حق لي ولأسرتي» بيانا أوضحت فيه انه «في لبنان، وفي انتظار وصول قطار التغيير، تصطدم التحركات المطلبية، الاجتماعية والنسائية بطبيعة النظام السياسي الطائفي الذي يغلب المصالح الطائفية على حقوق المواطنة للنساء والرجال على حد سواء، وهذا ما تؤكده الحجج التي سيقت في وجه الحملة كالتعلل بالمخاوف الطائفية والتوازنات الديموغرافية وصعوبة تغيير التقاليد والأعراف السائدة». وأعلنت «تأييدها ومشاركتها في التحركات الآيلة إلى تغيير النظام السياسي الطائفي السائد وذلك ضمانا للمساواة وللحقوق  ».

http://www.assafir.com/Article.aspx?EditionId=1792&ChannelId=42103&ArticleId=919&Author=

 

Nationality campaign to continue through 2011
Rights group screens documentary on battle to allow women to be treated as full citizens
By Ashraf Monzer
Special to The Daily Star
Wednesday, March 09, 2011

http://www.dailystar.com.lb/article.asp?edition_id=1&categ_id=1&article_id=125774#axzz1G5X4PQwO

Listen to the Article Powered by

BEIRUT: Lebanese human rights activists are nowhere near abandoning their almost nine-year-old battle for Lebanese women to pass on their nationality to their families.

More protests, conferences and lobbying will figure as a top priority on the agenda of women and human rights groups for 2011.

During a gathering to mark International Women’s Day at the Babel Theater in the Beirut district of Hamra Tuesday, the founder of the Collective for Research, Training on Development (CRTD.A), Lina Abu Habib vowed to pursue the battle and highlighted wide gender gaps in Lebanon.

CRTD.A has been battling since 2002 for Lebanese women to be granted the right to pass on their nationalities to their children.

Lebanon’s Nationality Law, which was adopted under the French Mandate in 1925, prohibits Lebanese women from granting their nationality to their husbands and children if they marry a non-Lebanese.

According to Abu Habib, the main challenges facing CRTD.A’s campaign were the sectarian makeup of the country, and fears stemming from the naturalization of Palestinian refugees.

“We will make no exceptions,” said Abu Habib. “We cannot exclude Palestinians because this will contradict human rights principles.”

The CRTD.A gathering, which was attended by German Ambassador Birgitta Maria Siefker-Eberle and Dutch Ambassador Heere Eltje Gerrit de Boer, saw the screening of “Kulluna Lil Watan” (All for the Nation), a documentary film by Lebanese director Carole Mansour.

The documentary was produced by the German and Dutch embassies and depicts the lives of Lebanese women from various social backgrounds who married foreigners.

“The first reason for supporting this film is that, this was a problem in Germany for quite a long time as well,” said the German Ambassador.

Eberle’s second reason for supporting Mansour’s film is that what was true for Germany is also true for Lebanon.

The German ambassador explained that her country had faced a similar situation, adding that while it proves to be a difficult endeavor, “it is not impossible for women to be granted the right to pass on their nationalities.”

The Dutch ambassador, meanwhile, reminded that Article 7 of Lebanon’s Constitution stipulates that the Lebanese shall be “equal before the law, equally enjoying civil and political rights and public duties and obligations without discriminations.” Boer called for scrapping all forms of discrimination against women in line with the country’s Constitution.

One of the main characters of Mansour’s “Kulluna Lil Watan” is Deebeh Chehayeb, who married an Egyptian man and currently struggles to raise her three daughters after her husband passed away.

“I am Lebanese, I was born here, I don’t want the Egyptian nationality, maybe if I get the Lebanese one I might think about the Egyptian,” her eldest daughter Zainab Chehayeb confides.

The documentary’s director said she was afraid that the General Security would express reservations over the film’s name, “Kulluna Lil Watan,” which is also the title of Lebanon’s national anthem.

Mansour admitted that the General Security requested that one scene from the movie be cut.

“It’s the scene where one of the interviewees complains about how Lebanese had to pay bribes to get their transactions processed,” she said. “I had to cut it off.”

2 thoughts on “On the Occasion of the 100th International Women’s Day Celebration

  1. ma bikafe ni7ke law ken kill shi bil balad byi7al bil 7ake ma ken 7ada t3azab lezim nwa2if nib3at wledna 3al maderiss layom wa7ad iza 7ada mhim met bil balad bisakro 3 iyem iza met il damir kam youn lezim nsakir

  2. what about if someone born from a lebanese mother and live ,studie in lebanon and married to a lebanese wife ,and father get the citizenship 1994 and all family brothers and sisters they all lebanese dosnt give me the right,to get the citizenship(jinsiah),its for justice and fair for our kids .

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