Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women
Adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by General Assembly
resolution 34/180 of 18 December 1979
entry into force 3 September 1981, in accordance with article 27(1)
The States Parties to the present Convention,
Noting that the Charter of the United Nations reaffirms faith in fundamental human rights, in the
dignity and worth of the human person and in the equal rights of men and women,
Noting that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights affirms the principle of the inadmissibility of
discrimination and proclaims that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights and
that everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth therein, without distinction of any
kind, including distinction based on sex,
Noting that the States Parties to the International Covenants on Human Rights have the obligation to
ensure the equal rights of men and women to enjoy all economic, social, cultural, civil and political
Considering the international conventions concluded under the auspices of the United Nations and the
specialized agencies promoting equality of rights of men and women,
Noting also the resolutions, declarations and recommendations adopted by the United Nations and the
specialized agencies promoting equality of rights of men and women,
Concerned, however, that despite these various instruments extensive discrimination against women
continues to exist,
Recalling that discrimination against women violates the principles of equality of rights and respect for
human dignity, is an obstacle to the participation of women, on equal terms with men, in the political,
social, economic and cultural life of their countries, hampers the growth of the prosperity of society
and the family and makes more difficult the full development of the potentialities of women in the
service of their countries and of humanity,
Concerned that in situations of poverty women have the least access to food, health, education,
training and opportunities for employment and other needs,
Convinced that the establishment of the new international economic order based on equity and justice
will contribute significantly towards the promotion of equality between men and women,
Emphasizing that the eradication of apartheid, all forms of racism, racial discrimination, colonialism,
neo-colonialism, aggression, foreign occupation and domination and interference in the internal affairs
of States is essential to the full enjoyment of the rights of men and women,
Affirming that the strengthening of international peace and security, the relaxation of international
tension, mutual co-operation among all States irrespective of their social and economic systems,
general and complete disarmament, in particular nuclear disarmament under strict and effective
international control, the affirmation of the principles of justice, equality and mutual benefit in relations
among countries and the realization of the right of peoples under alien and colonial domination and
foreign occupation to self-determination and independence, as well as respect for national sovereignty
and territorial integrity, will promote social progress and development and as a consequence will
contribute to the attainment of full equality between men and women,
Convinced that the full and complete development of a country, the welfare of the world and the cause
of peace require the maximum participation of women on equal terms with men in all fields,

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