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Originally established in 1953, the Arab ECOSOC’s primary goal is to implement the economic and social aspects of the Pact of the League of Arab States. It consists of ministers of economic and financial matters or their appointed representatives, and has two subcommittees: Social Affairs and Economic Affairs.

The Arab ECOSOC is responsible for:

  • Implementing economic and social aspects of the LAS Charter
  • Creating and supervising the LAS’s specialised organisations
  • Hosting Development, Economic and Social Summits: the Arab ECOSOC holds these summits every two years with the purpose of establishing and agreeing on specific mechanisms and strategies for development

How does it help tackle violence against women?

The importance of empowering women and promoting their economic, social and legal status and enhancing their role in public life in fulfillment of the principle of equality and emphasizing the principles of justice and equity in the society.

Declaration of the Socio-Economic Development Summit (Kuwait, January, 2009)

The Arab ECOSOC and its Development, Economic and Social Summits often adopt decisions in support of civil society work throughout the region. They also affirm international agendas relating to development, including the Millennium Development Goals and progress toward sustainable development. These connections to the international development agenda are important, as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals have a target specifically addressing the need to end violence against women in all its forms (goal 5, target 2). Currently, there are no formal guidelines for engagement with the Summits, however parallel forums for civil society have been held alongside the Summits. The Arab ECOSOC has allowed certain CSOs to attend their regular sessions.

iconStarCivil Society Engagement: Observer Status at Arab ECOSOC Regular Sessions

CSOs are allowed to attend the Arab ECOSOC’s regular sessions by invitation only. The Secretary General may also invite representatives from outside the LAS to attend these meetings, or institutions connected to the LAS, however this is subject to the Arab ECOSOC’s approval. It is important to note that attendance is only for observation, CSOs are not allowed to contribute to discussions.

iconLockWant more? Visit the LAS’s page on the Arab ECOSOC and the participation of civil society organisations

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