Tunisia seeks equality between women and men in inheritance: President

Karem Yehia, Tunis, Sunday 13 Aug 2017

Tunisia was recently the first Arab country to issue a law criminalising violence against women specifically

Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi said Sunday that his country is seeking to establish equality between men and women in inheritance, as the first Arab country to make such a move.

He also announced forming a committee to study the matter.

In his speech at the 61st commemoration of the Code of Personal Statue (CPS) that criminalises polygamy, Essebsi asked the government and his minister of justice to end a regulation that prohibits the documentation of any marriage of a Tunisian Muslim woman to a non-Muslim man.

''Inheritance is a matter for mankind that God left to the diligence of the people according to their era," Essibsi said.

Essebsi pledged to find a form that doesn't conflict with public opinion. He cited Turkey's recognition of equality between men and women since Mostafa Kamal Ataturk's era.

He also stressed that Islam does not conflict with democracy and development. "In Tunisia, democracy goes hand in hand with respect for Islam," he said.

Essebsi praised parliament's approval in July of a landmark bill that criminalises violence against women, making Tunisia the first Arab country to issue a law specifically addressing such violence.

Some 41 percent of Tunisian judges are women, while 60 percent in the medical field are women and 50 percent in the engineering sector are women, Essebi said.

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