Monday, 22. October 2012, Geneva.
Norway would like to thank the Argentinean delegation for the presentation of their National Report.
The situation for gender based violence in Argentina calls for intensified action, as well as a speedy implementation of law 26.485 from 2009. Norway commends the establishment of the united register for cases regarding domestic violence against women. We consider this as a most useful tool for ameliorating the situation and recommend that the instrument is further developed to create a full body of statistics regarding gender based violence throughout the entire country.
Credible reports show that Argentina’s criminalization of abortion results in a high number of unsafe abortions, threatening women’s universal right to life and health. Norway recommends that Argentina strengthens efforts to reduce the maternal mortality rate, giving particular emphasis to reducing the number of deaths caused by unsafe abortions. As part of a comprehensive response to reduce maternal mortality, Norway recommends that the right to abortion after rape is ensured throughout the country in accordance with the recent Federal Supreme Court verdict on this issue.
Active participation of civil society is essential for a meaningful and transparent UPR process and we would kindly request more information regarding the inclusion of NGOs in the report writing process. We recommend that Argentina undertakes an inclusive process with a wide range of civil society representatives when implementing the UPR recommendations.
Finally, several NGOs and journalists have raised concerns regarding the difficulty in accessing public information. We believe such access is a prerequisite for transparency and accountability of governments. We recommend that Argentina takes steps to improve the access to public information through the establishment of an independent and autonomous body to guarantee timely and effective access in compliance with international standards.
1. We would kindly ask Argentina to elaborate on the national report writing process and provide more information regarding the inclusion of NGOs in the UPR-process. We would e.g. like to know how many NGOs participated in the process, and if any of those involved represented indigenous groups.
2. Norway would kindly ask Argentina to elaborate on their efforts to ensure transparency and access to public information to journalists and NGOs. We would also like to know when Argentina will pass a law on access to public information.
3. According to the WHO, 27, 4 % of all maternal deaths in Argentina are consequences of illegal abortion. Considering the gravity of this issue, we would kindly ask the Argentine Government to inform on how they are working to lower the maternal death rate in general and illegal abortions in particular.
4. Considering women’s rights, Norway would like to know if the government plans on strengthening the budget for programs combatting gender based violence. Furthermore, we would like to know if the government has a national strategy for ensuring equal opportunities and treatment for victims of gender based violence, regardless of their home province.