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Thousands demonstrate in Tunis and Sfax for women's rights.

TUNIS (TAP) - Nearly 30,000 persons rallied on Monday evening in Tunis to claim the protection and advancement of women's gains and enshrine effective gender equality into the new constitution.

Organised on the 56th anniversary of the promulgation of the Code of Personal Status (CPS), this march was authorised and supervised by security forces.

It started about two hours after fast-breaking from the January 14 Square in Tunis and headed to Mohamed V Avenue where demonstrators gathered in front of the Human Rights Square, shouting slogans calling for total equality between men and women.

Meanwhile, another large rally of women, men and youth took place in the Congress Palace, in the presence of National Constituent Assembly (NCA) members, men of theatre and film-makers.

The main organisers of this rally are the Tunisian Association of Democratic Women (ATFD), the Tunisian Human Rights League (LTDH), the Republican Party, the Social and Democratic Path and the Call for Tunisia party.

A representative of this group read out a declaration calling for "effective and unconditional equality in rights and duties between men and women."

Signatories of this declaration warned in "this constituent stage" against what they described as "a new regression and possible backsliding in women's gains," urging mobilisation to lift reservations on the international Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women.

More than a thousand demonstrators also walked through the main streets of the city of Sfax, calling for enshrining the principle of gender equality.

The celebration of Women's Day takes place this year amid a controversy between the Islamic Ennahdha-led Government and women's rights activists worried about threats weighing on women's rights in Tunisia.

Tap 2012

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Publication:Agency Tunis Afrique Press
Geographic Code:6TUNI
Date:Aug 14, 2012
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