In February 2017, ARTICLE 19 reviewed the Tunisian Draft Organic Law Related to the Elimination of Violence against Women (Draft Law) for its compliance with international freedom of expression standards. The Draft Law was initiated by the Tunisian Ministry of Women, Family and Children and was approved by the Cabinet in July 2016.
ARTICLE 19 commends Tunisia's efforts to legislate in accordance with its obligations under international law to combat violence against women. We note, however, that Tunisia will need to ensure that these efforts do not violate its obligations under international law regarding the right to freedom of expression. As such, we are particularly concerned about the provisions in the Draft Law that criminalize speech is an overly broad manner.
ARTICLE 19 calls upon the Tunisian government to ensure that all provisions in the Draft Law are made compliant with international standards on freedom of expression before the Draft Law is adopted. We believe that reviewing the Draft Law for the compliance with these standards will ultimately lead to a stronger protection of human rights for all in the country.