By NOOR TOORANI , Posted on » Friday, August 06, 2010 RIGHTS activists are calling on the Bahrain government to speed up the implementation of international human right treaties that protect women and migrant workers. However, a senior government official denied claims that Bahrain was stalling - saying the country was working according to a four-year plan. The Bahrain Centre for Human Rights (BCHR) and the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS) issued a joint statement calling for the implementation of pledges and recommendations made in the country's Universal Periodic Review (UPR) at the UN. "Although there are some positive steps taken by Bahrain to sign international human rights treaties and conventions, nonetheless, there remain a lot of deficiencies," read the statement. In a UPR adopted in 2008, Bahrain pledged to make it a priority to pass a law providing citizenship to children of Bahraini women married to foreigners; launch a campaign with a view to removing reservations to the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW); and inform the Human Rights Council in 2012 on the adoption of legislation on female domestic workers who are not protected by the Labour Law, among other things. However, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Dr Nazar Al Baharna dismissed the concerns, saying the country was working on a four-year plan to implement recommendations it volunteered to uphold. "Regarding the recommendations for the UPR, we have set a four-year plan to fulfil our commitments," he told the GDN. "We have a scheduled plan and we are working according to it, wherein we annually submit a report about our progressive achievements." Dr Al Baharna also revealed the country submitted its second report in June and said work was on schedule. "We are progressing according to the schedule because there are some issues that can be tackled in one year, while others take as long as four years," he said. "The responsibility of the implementation is to get every sector and organisation involved in the process, which is what we are doing to achieve the commitments. "We are working with all sides from councils, NGOs and organisations to make this a reality. "Of course NGOs have the right to comment on our job, but we answer to the (UN) Human Rights Council, which has the legitimacy to inform us whether we are on the right track or not." The BCHR and CIHRS statement singled out the plight of Bahraini women married to foreigners whose children do not have citizenship; the absence of a Family Law to protect women's rights in Shi'ite domestic disputes; and the fact that domestic workers are not protected by the Labour Law as key areas of concern. The Family Law has been introduced in Sunni Sharia courts, but not in Shi'ite Sharia courts due to opposition from Shi'ite clergymenز