Mali: Fatoumata Dembélé Diarra

Being able to help others is a great opportunity and a duty toward the most disempowered among us. I dedicate the Nobel Peace Prize 2005 to the victims of all forms of violence the world over.

— Fatoumata Dembélé Diarra

Fatoumata Dembélé Diarra (50) was at the heart of the Malian Democratic Movement that opposed the monolithic and dictatorial system of General Moussa Traoré in 1991. At the time of the Sovereign National Lecture of Mali in 1991, Madame Diarra Fatoumata was an expert member of the group of people who contributed to the compilation of fundamental texts of a democratic Mali. She was elected Judge of the International Criminal Court in 2003.

Fatoumata Dembélé Diarra is the founding president of the Office on Relief for Impoverished Women and Children and Observation of the Rights of Children and Women (ODEF). Through these two structures, she has supported hundreds of women and of children in distress. She is at ease in her work since she is a magistrate and knows all the intricacies of Malian justice. Her legal office has given many women free legal assistance to defend their rights. Madame Diarra was Vice President of the International Federation of Women in Legal Careers (FIFCJ) from 1994 to 1997. She has also been vice president of the Federation of African Lawyers since March 1995 and has attended several courses on the legal position of women and children in Mali and in Africa. She has published many articles, for example “Rights and Exclusion,” “Legal Assistance,” “Circumcision and Positive Malian Rights,” and “Violence against Women and the Obstacles to the Malian Women Exercising their Rights.” Madame Diarra was a member of the national commission on trafficking in children and international adoption, a commission that has done much to protect Malian children against the networks of organized crimes that, ultimately, sell them to the coffee and cocoa plantations in Ivory Coast.

Observatoire des Droits de l'Enfant et de la Femme (ODEF) Fédération Internationale des Femmes des carrières Juridiques (FIFCJ)