The Personal is Political: Family Law in the MENA Region

Across the MENA region, women are constantly faced with structural barriers that hinder them from becoming equal members within their families and societies as well as equal citizens in the eye of their states. Family laws in the region are one of those main barriers.

Most countries in the MENA region derive their family laws from religious laws in order to govern family matters such as marriage, divorce, custody and maintenance. In addition, colonial influence by British or French laws have led to hybrid legal codes. The religious elements in those family laws vary across the region; for example, Tunisia has one of the most secular family laws, while Yemen claims to base its Family Law exclusively on Shari’a. However, regardless of the differences, family laws in the region are entrenched in patriarchal thinking that perpetuates certain customs and traditions that discriminate against women, violate their human rights and continuously reproduce the imbalance of power between women and men.

FES aims to provide space for feminist actors within the region to exchange knowledge, experience and best practices that assist them in overcoming challenges and backlash against their proposed reforms of family laws in their respective counties.


| Political Feminism, The Personal is Political: Family Law in the MENA Region | Publications

Family Law in the MENA Region

This study seeks to shed light on the personal status laws in Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, the Palestinian Territories, Sudan, Syria and Tunisia.…



12.06.2020 | Political Feminism | Events

A webinar on "Care Roles in Arab Media"

Under its regional Political Feminism project, Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) is honored to invite you to a webinar on “Care Roles in Arab Media”…



30.09.2021 | Blog, Political Feminism, FES Regional Peace and Security Project | Press

Capitalist Patriarchal Nightmare, Ecofeminist Awakening

We must dismantle capitalist patriarchy that thrives on exploiting women and nature to attain a socially and environmentally just future.


05.07.2021 | Political Feminism | Press

Smashing the Patriarchy & Co: How Arab Feminists are Re-politicizing their Movement

This essay explores the ways in which Arab feminists are re-politicizing their movement and offers an overview of the strategies that are currently…


25.02.2021 | Political Feminism | Press

Advancing National Mechanisms for Women’s Rights and Gender Equality

Following the first World Conference on Women in Mexico in 1975, the World Plan for Action for the Implementation of the Objectives of International…



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