Three years after the uprisings which started the “Arab Spring”,
the picture is a mixed one: the status of women and its evolution
vary considerably from one country to another, just like the general
political landscape. Tunisia and Morocco, following different approaches,
are managing to gradually improve and consolidate what they have
achieved. Libya on the verge of civil war and Egypt struggling to
regain stability have not yet given women’s rights the commitment
they demand. In Algeria, against a largely unchanging political
context, progress regarding the status of women is still insufficient.
In all these countries, advances are possible and desirable, through
the implementation of the principle of equality provided for in
the respective constitutions.
So far, Morocco and Tunisia have been prime interlocutors
of the Council of Europe. These fruitful relations should continue
in the future. These two countries have the opportunity to play
an exemplary modernising role in the region and in the community
of countries with a Muslim majority. They demonstrate that it is
possible to move towards gender equality without abandoning their
cultural and religious roots.
Co-operation between the Council of Europe and the countries
of the region, particularly with the tools of interparliamentary
co-operation and the “South Programme”, should be strengthened and
the improvement of the status of women should be integrated into
programmes across all sectors.