International Advisory Council
For 40 years, Latifa Jbabdi has advocated for human rights and women’s rights in Morocco and in the Arab world. Widely regarded as one of the leaders of Morocco’s women’s movement, Mrs. Jbabdi has endured detention as a political prisoner, served as an elected member of parliament, edited one of the country’s most progressive magazines, co-founded numerous human rights organisations, and served as member of two high-profile national commissions.
From 2007 to 2011, Mrs. Jbabdi was a member of the Moroccan Parliament where she played a key role on a wide range of rights and development issues. Prior to that, she served for three years as the sole female commissioner on Morocco’s Equity and Reconciliation Commission, the first truth commission established in the Arab world. From 2002 to 2011, she also served as a commissioner on Morocco’s National Human Rights Commission.
In 1998, Mrs. Jbabdi was appointed Ambassador of Civil Society to the UN Commission on Human Rights and Coordinator for Morocco and the Arab world of the World March of Women. She was also coordinator of the regional conference of African women’s NGOs in preparation for the Vienna Conference on Human Rights in 1993. She is a founding member of the Moroccan Association for Human Rights and from 1983 to 1994 served as chief editor of the Arabic-language newspaper “8 Mars”.
Mrs. Jbabdi is co-Founder and former President of the Women’s Action Union, which worked for nearly 26 years to change Morocco’s family code, the Moudawana. She led a national campaign to gather one million signatures as a petition to reform the Moudawana and was instrumental in the landmark changes made to it. Mrs. Jbabdi is a member of the National Observatory of the Rights of the Child and a permanent adviser of the Social Development Agency in Rabat. She consults across the Arab world in the field of development, women’s rights and human rights. In 2005, Vital Voices honored her with its Global Leadership Award.