Excellences: In 1994, when ICPD was held in Cairo, Eritrea crafted its National Charter while celebrating its 1st de jure independence. In that Charter, it was clearly stated that; "issue of women is a major social issue and society that doesn't respect the rights and equality of women, can't be truly considered liberated". Hence, it funneled its finance, including the international support, to achieve these noble objectives.
It made education free for all, from elementary to tertiary; increased number of schools from just 132 to 1987; NER in elementary school from 30% to 83.2%; in middle school from 6% to 48%. This was done with the objective to enhance girls' participation, retention and performance in education.
Eritrea has made healthcare services almost free with access to health care within 10 km radius for 80% and 5km radius for 60% of the population. In the same period, Maternal Mortality Rate reduced by 74%; Neonatal Mortality by 73%; entered the SDG era achieving all three Health MDGs; and jumped life expectancy from 47 to 66 years.
FGM/C is forbidden and made punishable by law since 2007. This, coupled with regular awareness campaigns has created encouraging sign towards eliminating it.
These achievements and the challenges ahead are good reasons for Eritrea to march to Nairobi with confidence to finish the unfulfilled job in the near future. Hence, Eritrea will commit:
1. To make preventable maternal mortality and morbidities zero by 2022. In doing so, it will further reformulate its existing UHC strategies, policies and programs to address the necessary sexual and reproductive health interventions. This will guarantee and ensure individuals' right to bodily integrity, autonomy and reproductive rights.
2. To create access for all adolescents and youth, especially girls, to comprehensive and age-responsive information, education and friendly quality and timely services. This will enable them to make free and informed decisions and choices about their sexuality and reproductive lives, such as, unintended pregnancies, all forms of sexual and gender-based violence, harmful practices, sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS.
3. Eritrea will strive for, Zero sexual and gender-based violence and harmful practices, including zero child, early and forced marriage, as well as zero female genital mutilation.
4. Eritrea will commit to eliminate all forms of discrimination against women and girls, in order to realize their full individuals' socio-economic potential.