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India: Rape Victim’s Death Demands Action - December 29, 2012

The death on December 29, 2012, of a 23-year-old student who was gang raped and assaulted should spur decisive action by the Indian government to combat sexual violence, Human Rights Watch said today. The attack catalyzed massive nationwide demonstrations and reopened public debate about reforming India’s inadequate laws and practices concerning sexual assault...read more from HRW

Fighting widowhood practices that enable violence against women in Togo - December 26, 2012

Becoming a widow exposes women to acute forms of discrimination in regions of Togo where traditional widowhood practices persist.

These practices can be so degrading and humiliating for widows that they contribute to making them even more physically, emotionally and economically vulnerable...read more from UNHR

In Saudi Arabia, women are confined by technology - December 24, 2012

Text messages are the ultimate convenience, used by people worldwide to communicate, often to notify friends and families of their whereabouts. In many countries, new technologies can serve to enhance individual liberty. But technology does not always liberate...read more from HRW

AID POLICY: Integrating menstrual hygiene management into aid programming

NAIROBI, 19 December 2012 (IRIN) - Menstrual hygiene issues should be integrated into programmes and policies across sectors, including water, sanitation and hygiene, reproductive health, emergency management, and education, notes a new report. Currently, taboos surrounding menstruation leave many girls and women in low- and middle-income countries without access to sanitation facilities and excluded from school and opportunities...read more from IRIN

Older women most common victims of domestic violence - December 18, 2012

MORE THAN a quarter of women in Cyprus have suffered some form of domestic violence, according to the first national study carried out on violence in the family.

Based on the study’s findings, 28 per cent of Cypriot women have experienced some form of abuse from their husbands/partners, with the highest proportion of abuse (36 per cent) recorded in women in the 45-64 age group...read more from Cyprus Mail

Bride-kidnapping debate divides Kyrgyzstan - December 12, 2012

Kyrgyzstan's parliament is poised to vote on legislation that would toughen the penalty for bride kidnapping.

The bill has caused heated debate, splitting parliament and society into those who defend it as a tradition and those who see it as a violent crime...read more from BBC

Egypt’s new constitution limits fundamental freedoms and ignores the rights of women - November 30, 2012

A draft constitution approved by Egypt’s Constituent Assembly falls well short of protecting human rights and, in particular, ignores the rights of women, restricts freedom of expression in the name of protecting religion, and allows for the military trial of civilians, Amnesty International said...read more from Amnesty International

Endangering Women Human Rights Defenders - November 29, 2012

With the U.S. elections now over, many are speculating over who will succeed Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State to oversee U.S. foreign policy and the $47-billion U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) annual budget. While a significant chunk of USAID spending goes to education and health programs, pockets of aid enlarge the already bloated military budgets of recipient governments..read more from FPIF

‘Stop killing women human rights defenders,’ groups tell Aquino - November 29, 2012

MANILA – Wearing indigenous clothes, women human rights defenders trooped to the Department of Justice this morning and called on Justice Secretary Leila de Lima and President Benigno Aquino III to stop the killings...read more from bulatlat

UN Trust Fund – Application Guidelines

The UN Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women is accepting applications for its 17th grant cycle (2012) from government authorities at the national and local levels, civil society organizations and networks — including non-governmental, women’s and community-based organizations and coalitions and operational research institutions — and UN Country Teams in partnership with governments and civil society organizations. The deadline for submission of applications is 21 January 2013, 11:59 EST (GMT–5)...read more from UNwomen

Young Woman And Her Family Targeted For Attending School - November 28, 2012

Women's rights organizations in India, led by STEPS Women's Development Organization, Pudukottai, are expressing outrage and demanding accountability in case where a 16-year old girl and her family in Tamil Nadu have become the targets of the local Jamat after defying a diktat to stop sending girls to school after the onset of puberty or class 8...read more from AWID

ZAMBIA: Advocates push forward to protect women & children from violence

(WNN) Lusaka, ZAMBIA, AFRICA: With the global campaign to stop violence against women, 16 days of Activism, well underway, those who are working for women and human rights in Zambia are calling for the establishment of fast-track courts so that cases of Gender Based Violence (GBV) are processed through the courts in the shortest time possible...read more from WNN

Uganda to officially pass ‘Kill The Gays’ bill - November 12, 2012

Uganda will officially pass the ‘Kill The Gays’ bill at the end of this year despite international criticism.

Speaker Rebecca Kadaga said the anti-gay bill will become law by December since most Ugandans ‘are demanding it’...read more from gay star news

Panic button to prevent abuses in Turkey

A recent project run by two Turkish ministries aims to combat domestic violence by providing women panic buttons, which will be integrated into a call-center system in case of emergency. The panic button will be disguised as jewelry, a phone or a watch an official says..read more from Hürriyet Daily News

Ethiopia: At What Level is Child Protection Services? - November 8, 2012

The world has over the last two decades made huge stride in ensuring child protection through general social and economic development, better health care, improvement in nutrition, investment in education and family planning...read more from All Africa

Women Human Rights Defenders And Digital Security: Reflections With A Latin American Accent - November 7, 2012

Women human rights defenders (WHRDs) use all of the means within their reach to help ensure that their efforts – generally carried out in negative and sometimes precarious conditions – have the greatest impact possible. In the search to amplify their messages, their voices and their struggles, they have explored every potential strategy. And this is especially true if their advocacy revolves around women’s rights specifically. The use of the internet and other digital media in the struggle for human rights has become increasingly common. However, as is true wherever WHRDs act, although these tools offer opportunities, they also entail risks and threats...read more from AWID

Women's Rights at a Standstill in Jordan - November 7, 2012

Since popular uprisings swept the region, the Jordanian government has stated that political and economic reforms are key to the country’s future stability and prosperity. Yet, despite the formation of numerous committees and commissions, there has been little emphasis on women’s issues...read more from New York Times

Jordan: Give women equal citizenship rights to men - November 5, 2012

Shireen lives in Jordan with her non-Jordanian husband and their children. Due to the country’s sex discriminatory nationality law, Shireen’s passport is stamped with the notice: “Children are not permitted to be included in the mother’s passport due to the husband’s different nationality.” She has a troubled marriage and lives in constant fear that her husband will take her children away to his home country, which he can do since their children are only registered on his passport...read more from Equality now

Somalia to Get First Female Foreign Minister, Fauzia Yusuf Haji Adan - November 5, 2012

Somalia is to get its first female foreign minister in a cabinet formed by new Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon.

Fauzia Yusuf Haji Adan is among 10 politicians joining a cabinet that has been significantly reduced in size.

She described her inclusion as "historic" for both the country and Somali women in particular....read more from African Seer

Security Council urges wider role for women’s groups in peace efforts - November 2, 2012

The Security Council has called on the international community to give women’s civil society organizations a prominent role in the negotiation, planning and implementation of peace processes and post-conflict development programmes...read more from UN

Disclose if women staffers were filmed in toilets: CIC to NTRO - November 1, 2012

The National Technical Research Organisation has been directed by the Chief Information Commissioner to disclose all information related to alleged filming of its women employees in the toilets using hidden cameras...read more from The Indian Express

Tanzania: Women Call for Review of 'Unfair' Laws - November 1, 2012

SEVERAL women, who turned out at meetings where the Constitutional Review Commission (CRC) collected people's views on the new constitution, called for review of laws on inheritance, divorce and protection of widows, saying the current ones were weak, obsolete and gender biased...read more from allAfrica

Egypt’s Women Rebel Against Harassment - November 1, 2012

CAIRO, Nov 1 2012 (IPS) - Egyptian bullies who sexually harass women in the streets, often taking advantage of mob situations and the anonymity these provide, are getting a taste of their own medicine – and they don’t like it...read more from IPS

Zimbabwe Women Fight For Rights In New Constitution - October 31, 2012

Harare - For long Zimbabwean women have played second fiddle to their male counterparts in all spheres of life but a new constitution is set to change all this...read more from RadioVop

Probe begins into “sexual exploitation” in women’s shelter - October 31, 2012

A day after Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan ordered an inquiry into media reports of sexual exploitation of women inmates in a State-run shelter home in Mankhurd here, the Mumbai Crime Branch has initiated a probe..read more from The Hindu

Sex harassment rife in 'a man's world', according to Human Rights Commission report - October 30, 2012

WOMEN who speak out about sexual harassment at work are more likely to be labelled troublemakers by their colleagues, become ostracised and, in extreme cases, even demoted...read more from The Australian New

Threats against women’s rights advocate Denis Mukwege are another wake-up call for us all - October 29, 2012

Last Thursday evening, as many of you will have seen via media reports, a true hero of women and human rights Dr Denis Mukwege narrowly escaped death during an assassination attempt on his life that killed his security guard...read more from PLOS

Contending With Rising Cases Of Rape - October 29, 2012

Uncontrolled rape incidences all over Nigeria have become a daily occurrence and a fundamental issue affecting women and girl child development in the country. Today, of all women’s fears, that of being raped is the darkest. Though a global phenomenon, appalling side to our experience of its menace here have to do with impunity of the perpetrators, lackluster response of justice administrators and absence of institutional supportive system to help the victims...read more from PM News

Why women will impact global economy as much as China - October 25, 2012

Organizations today would never think of not investing in high growth markets like China and India. Yet they are still dragging their heels when it comes to investing in women, despite it being a win-win situation for the global economy, organizations and women themselves. This is not just a human rights issue -- it makes absolute business sense. Research conducted throughout the world shows gender balance in top positions contributes to improved competitiveness and better business performance...read more from CNN

Joint Statement by UN expert bodies on enforced disappearances - October 25, 2012

The Chair of the Committee on Enforced Disappearances, Emmanuel Decaux, has told the General Assembly that the universal ratification and full implementation of the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance should be a collective goal...read more from OHCHR

Surveying Women Human Rights Defenders: Harassment is the biggest online problem - October 25, 2012

The Association for Progressive Communications (APC)'s “Connect your rights: Internet rights are human rights” campaign has commissioned one of the first international surveys of the online threats faced by women human rights defenders (WHRDs)...read more from APC

Putting eVAW on the map: APC and partners launch first-of-its-kind mapping tool - October 19, 2012

Recent acts of violence against teenage girls Amanda Todd and Malala Yousafzai have sparked discussion about the internet’s role in perpetuating violence against women. One of the ways APC has been working to end technology-based violence against women is through a new mapping project that will help document such cases....read more from APC

Tunisia rape victim accused of 'indecency' - September 27, 2012

Tunisian civil society is rallying in support of a young woman who was raped by police officers in what they say is part of a broader assault on women's rights by religious conservatives...read more from Aljazeera

Human rights group: Islamists becoming more repressive in northern Mali - September 25, 2012

The Islamists' efforts to impose their strict form of Islamic law known as Shariah has also extended to banning ring tones on mobile phones that are not Quranic verse readings, as well as prohibiting cigarettes and alcohol.

Women who wear jewelry or perfume, or fail to cover their heads can also face punishment, Human Rights Watch said in its report Tuesday...read more from Star Tribune

FOI: SERAP, WARDC Sue FG Over Failure To Release Spending Records On Maternal Death Prevention - September 23, 2012

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) and Women Advocates and Research and Documentation Center (WARDC) have dragged the Federal Government to the Federal High Court, Ikeja, asking the court for leave “to apply for judicial relief and to seek an order of mandamus directing and or compelling the government to disclose and make available up-to-date information on government/public spending relating to maternal death prevention for the past five years.”...read more from Sahara reporter

Sudan: Women Human Rights Defenders Gaining Momentum - September 21, 2012

Women’s groups are active in the peace-building and non-violence movements and have been gaining momentum. Ms. Hala Abd Alahim of Haq has even become the first woman president of a political party in Sudan....read more from Nobel Women's Initiative

Swaziland: Child Marriages Banned - September 20, 2012

Mbabane — The practice of men marrying underage girls - which has been an accepted social norm for centuries but has been linked in recent years to the spread of HIV - was recently declared illegal in Swaziland...read more from All Africa

Purification rituals come under fire - September 20, 2012

KATHMANDU: Women’s rights defenders have termed Rishi Panchami rituals for the ‘purification of sins committed throughout the year’ a severe form of society-imposed discrimination that undermines women’s self-respect...read more from the Himalayan

A Tribe’s Epidemic of Child Sex Abuse, Minimized for Years - September 19, 2012

Federal officials are now moving to take over the tribe’s social service programs, according to members of the tribe, government officials and documents. The action comes after years of failure by government and tribal law enforcement officials to conduct proper investigations of dozens of cases of child sexual abuse, including rape...read more from the New York Times

Republic of Congo and Guinea ratify the Protocol on the Rights of Women in Africa - September 19, 2012

The Solidarity for African Women’s Rights Coalition (SOAWR), a pan-African coalition of 42 organizations in 23 African countries, congratulates the Republic of Congo and the Republic of Guinea on their ratification of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa (hereafter the Protocol). The ratification by Congo and Guinea on 6 August and 17 September 2012 respectively, brings the total number of ratifications to 34 (thirty-four) out of the 54 (fifty-four) African member states...read more from Pambazuka News

All-female Party To Run In Palestinian Elections - September 19, 2012

A new group running for municipal elections in Hebron is offering residents an alternative to politics as usual in the conservative West Bank city: Women at the helm, instead of men...read more from AWID

Public morality outrage - September 14, 2012

Malaysia continues to resist the calls of women to remove “public morality”” from the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration (AHRD), as it is being drafted by the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR)...read more from Southeast Asia Globe

Husbands may have to pay salaries to wives in India -paper

NEW DELHI (TrustLaw) – The Indian government is mulling a proposal that would make it mandatory for men to share a percentage of their monthly income with wives who stay at home to do household chores and look after the children, the Indian Express reported on Monday...read more from TrustLaw

Cleric charged over alleged genital mutilation of girls - September 13, 2012

An Australian cleric was ordered to stand trial Thursday over the alleged genital mutilation of two girls aged 6 and 7.
The cultural practice, outlawed in Australia in 1994, is common in parts of Africa, the Middle East and Asia with over 100 million women thought to have gone through a procedure that ranges from a small cut to the complete removal of the clitoris...read more from Times Live

Tanzania: Need to Involve Women in Decision Making - September 12, 2012

Many countries have scored high in promoting women through speaking-out-loud, documenting laws and adopting regional and international declarations and conventions on gender equality in past three decades, but practically it is still far from attaining the goal...read more from All Africa

Religious, Human Rights Leaders Speak out for Jailed Pakistani Christian Girl - September 2, 2012

Religious and human rights leaders from around the world have stepped forward to defend a Pakistani Christian girl who has been arrested and jailed for the supposed crime of blasphemy. Rimsha Masih, who is believed to be around 11 years old and who reportedly has Down syndrome, was accused in mid-August of burning a booklet containing scripture from the Quran, and for throwing the burned pages into the garbage...read more from the new America

In Peace, Palestinian Women Under Attack

After the brutal murder of a Palestinian woman in late July in a busy Bethlehem marketplace, local human rights groups are pushing for stronger reforms to stem violence against women in the West Bank and Gaza Strip...read more from IPS

Sierra Leone lawmakers pass sexual offences act

Minister of Social Welfare, Gender and Children's Affairs Stephen Gaojia said the new bill was "a victory for Sierra Leoneans as it protects women, children and the disabled against sexual abuse"...read more from Yahoo News

From the Delhi police: Why women deserve to be raped

One of the most depressing aspects of writing about the recent string of rape cases are the responses these kinds of stories inevitably evoke. The Internet trolls come out in swarms to condemn the victim: for being out late at night, for being divorced, talking to strangers, drinking, dressing “provocatively”, and, the worst, for making it all up...read more from first post

Forced Pregnancy Testing: Blatant Discrimination and a Gross Violation of Human Rights - August 31, 2012

Earlier this month, news spread of a Louisiana charter school’s policy that would have allowed faculty to force any student suspected of being pregnant to take a pregnancy test—and, if the test came back positive, to force her to go on home study...read more from RH Reality Check

Japan denying guilt of comfort women mobilizations - August 30, 2012

The UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women adopted a final opinion on the comfort women issue after meetings in 1994, 2003, 2004 and 2009, calling on the Japanese government to acknowledge its responsibility and provide compensation...read more from The Hankyoreh

Iraqi Kurdistan: Law Banning FGM Not Being Enforced - August 29, 2012

The practice of female genital mutilation continues in the Kurdistan region of Iraq a year after a landmark law banning it went into effect because the Kurdistan Regional Government has not taken steps to implement the law. The Family Violence Law, which went into effect on August 11, 2011, includes several provisions to eradicate female genital mutilation (FGM), recognized internationally as a form of violence against women...read more from Human Rights Watch

Iran: Proposed Penal Code Deeply Flawed - August 29, 2012

(Beirut) – Proposed amendments to Iran’s penal code would violate the rights of accused people and criminal defendants, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Iranian authorities should suspend enactment of the proposed amendments and undertake a major overhaul of the country’s abusive penal laws...read more from Hauman right Watch

Women and human rights - August 29, 2012

It is deeply disturbing fact that more than 90 percent of Pakistani women believe they are the property of their husbands- before marriage that of their parents- it seems obvious that they are not aware of their human rights secured under the law of the land and that also the international law...read more from Pakistan Observer

Righting the Wrongs of Forced Sterilization in Namibia - August 28, 2012

It may be one of the last places you would expect to feel unsafe, but for many Namibian women living with HIV the hospital is as scary a place as it could be comforting. For many women in this southern African nation, particularly pregnant women, health care professionals can sometimes seem like wolves in sheep’s clothing. Add HIV into the mix, and things get even more complicated...read more from Green Answers

Afghanistan woman parliamentarian shares dreams for new nation

(WNN) Kabul, AFGHANISTAN: 37 year old Fawzia Koofi, Afghanistan’s first female parliamentary speaker, is currently a leading candidate for the country’s 2014 presidential elections...read more from Women News Network

Rwenzururu Kingdom Introduces Certificates To Curb Early Marriages

According to the new strategy, the marriage certificates will only be issued to girls who are above 18 years.

The Rwenzururu Kingdom has introduced marriage certificates to curb early marriages which are rampant in the kingdom especially Kasese district...read more from Uganda Radio Network

In Norway, Gender Equality Does Not Extend to the Bedroom

Norway is still one of 127 countries in the world — including 12 members of the European Union — that do not explicitly criminalize rape within marriage, according to a survey of women’s access to justice published by U.N. Women...read more from The New York Times

Women seek justice over sterilisation - August 23 2012

Over 40 HIV-postive women who were allegedly sterilized against their will go to court to demand justice and possible compensation. The chairperson of the National Gender and Equality Commission Winfred Lichuma who is championing the women's cause described what happened to the women as "atrocious an infringement of their human rights and contrary to medical ethics." "Those responsible should be punished to the fullest extent of the law," Lichuma said during the launch of a report on coerced sterilization of HIV women by medical personnel. The study was conducted this year in Kakamega and Nairobi...read more from the star

Tunisia: UN Working Group on Women Calls on Tunisia to Safeguard Equality Gains - August 21, 2012

Tunis — The United Nations Working Group on discrimination against women in law and practice, Tuesday, called on the Tunisian Government to take all necessary steps to safeguard the country's achievements in gender equality, non-discrimination and women's human rights, in accordance with its international human rights obligations...read more from all Africa

bianet is Monitoring Male Violence

In Turkey, nearly every day men kill, sexually harrass and rape women. bianet keeps account of the stream of male violence that is reported in news agencies, national and local media every day to lay bare the extent of violence against women...read more on the reports from bianet

Domestic violence against women on rise in Argentina - August 17, 2012

New official figures show that one woman dies in Argentina every day of domestic violence and intimate partner homicides, Press TV reports.

The figures have been released by the Femicides Observatory. Furthermore, the Argentina’s Supreme Court Office has registered more than 27,000 cases of violence against women since 2008 with psychological abuse rates reaching 96 percent...read more from PressTV

Female genital mutilation banned under Somalia's new constitution - August 17, 2012

Activists have welcomed a ban on female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) in the new constitution of Somalia – where 96% of women undergo one of the more extreme forms of the practice – but warn that translating the law into action will require more than just a legal declaration...read more from the guardian

Iran Obstructs Women’s Access to Education, Moves Closer to Segregating University Classes and Bars Women’s Entry to Certain Majors - August 16, 2012

In recent weeks, Iran has taken significant action to segregate university classes, including closing certain majors to women entirely. Following the release of university entrance exam results for the upcoming academic year, 36 universities announced that they will bar women from pursuing 77 fields of study, such as engineering, accounting, education, counseling, and chemistry...read more from WLP

Lee presses Japan to resolve 'comfort women' issue - Agust 15, 2012

South Korean President Lee Myung-bak pressed Japan to take sincere steps to resolve long-running grievances over Tokyo's wartime sexual enslavement of Korean women, saying the act was a violation of "universal human rights and historic justice...read more from Korea Herald

Africa: Rwandan Government Takes Critical Step in Recognizing Women's Fundamental Human Rights - August 15, 2012

Affirming the importance of women's access to safe and legal abortion, the Rwandan government has lifted its reservation to Article 14(2)(c) of the African Charter on Human and People's Rights of Women in Africa (also known as the Maputo Protocol). The Maputo Protocol is the only international treaty that explicitly guarantees the right to legal abortion...read more from all Africa

Nepal asked not to ban working women from migrating to Gulf - August 15, 2012

Expressing unhappiness over the Nepalese government's decision to ban its women citizens under the age of 30 from working in Gulf countries, a leading human rights group has asked it to revoke the curbs and instead improve protections to its domestic workers...read more from business-standard

Accra: Women's Ministry develops National Gender Policy Document - August 14, 2012

GNA - The Ministry of Women and Children's Affairs (MOWAC) in collaboration with other women groups are developing a National Gender Policy, to build a society devoid of discrimination for both men and women.

The policy, which would also serve as a tool for advancing gender equality and women empowerment targets in Ghana, would be based on key pillars to assist government address gender equality gaps and disparities..read more from Ghana news agency

Saudi Arabia Creating “For Women Only” Cities - August 13, 2012

The US has seen plenty of debates about separating students based on gender; about whether single-sex colleges are to women’s benefit or disadvantage. In Saudi Arabia, which is consistently ranked as one of the worst places for women in the world, businesswomen are behind plans to create a new industrial city for women workers only. The new city is the first of a number planned and is to provide women with greater financial opportunities and independence, while maintaining the segregation of the genders....read more from Care2

Murders of women on rise; 432 killed in six months - August 13, 2012

Karachi: Increasing cases of murders of women and girls in Pakistan has fully exposed the gender vulnerability in Pakistan, as 432 women have been killed in the first six months of the current year, said president Lawyers for Human Rights and Legal Aid (LHRLA) Zia Awan...read more on daily times

Kashmir women ordered to cover up or risk acid attack - August 13, 2012

The threat has sown fear throughout India’s Jammu and Kashmir state where it revives memories of a similar campaign in 2001 when several women were attacked with acid...read more from telegraph

Man who raped daughter with Down syndrome gets reduced sentence - August 12, 2012

Lawyers and nongovernmental organizations have reacted angrily after the Supreme Court of Appeals reduced a sexual abuse sentence against a father convicted of raping his own daughter on the grounds that the girl had remained a virgin even though she had aborted the fetus...read more from daily news

Kazakstan: Disability Still Seen as Bar to Motherhood - August 12, 2012

Disabled women in Kazakstan face many obstacles in fighting for their rights, not least when it comes to accessing reproductive health services in the state sector...read more from IWPR

UK court finds parents guilty in honor killing - August 3, 2012

The Pakistani parents of a teenage girl have been found guilty of murdering a daughter who rebelled against a forced marriage to her cousin — a conviction that was clinched with the girl's younger sister testifying that she saw her parents suffocate her older sibling..read more from CBS

Nigeria: Bauchi House Considers Bill On Compulsory HIV Test Before Marriage - July 31, 2012

Bauchi State House of Assembly is set to pass a law for compulsory Humane Immune Virus, HIV, test before marriage in the state.

Mr. Iliyasu Zwall of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, representing Lere/Bula State Constituency in the House, sponsored the bill, yesterday, which seeks for a law to compel intending couple to undergo compulsory HIV test before marriage to reduce the scourge of the virus in the society...read more from all afirica

Mali unwed couple 'stoned to death'- July 30, 2012

Islamists occupying the northern Mali town of Aguelhok have stoned an unmarried couple to death in front of about 200 people, two local government officials said.

The incident, which reportedly took place on Sunday, is the first reported sharia killing since they occupied the area, ratcheting up pressure on an embattled interim government...read more from Aljazeera

Nigeria: Why Women? - July 30, 2012

Why women' is a recurrent question every time the desire for increased representation of women in government is expressed. It seems like a valid question for Nigerians to ask, considering some of the most topical or emotive discussions in the media over the last year and the reality of the perception of the female in our society...read more from all Africa

Namibia judge backs sterilised women - July 30, 2012

A judge in Namibia has ruled that three women were sterilised without their informed consent but said there was no evidence this was because they were HIV-positive.

The case was brought by three women who opted to have Caesarean deliveries to reduce the risk of passing Aids to their babies...read more from BBC

The Word on Women - Landmark UN resolution recognizes the sexual rights of adolescents and young people

The world currently has the largest generation in history of adolescents and youth aged 10-24 years. On 27th April this year, during its 45th Session, the United Nations Commission on Population and Development (CPD) adopted a landmark Resolution on the sexual and reproductive health and rights of adolescents and youth...read more from Trustlaw

Sri Lanka - Child Rape On The Rise - Girls - July 23, 2012

A spate of child rape cases in Sri Lanka has angered child rights activists and moved the government to consider tightening the relevant laws and making the offence punishable with the death sentence...read more from IPS

Cote d'Ivoire: Law Offers Battered Women Little Protection - July 19, 2012

Abidjan — A shiver ran down Habiba Kanaté's* spine when she read about a policeman shooting and killing his wife in Abidjan, the economic capital of Côte d'Ivoire. "That could have been me," she said...read more from all africa

On the Nation's Birthday, South Sudan's Women Must Stand Up for Their Rights - July 9, 2012

This has been a rapidly changing year of independence for South Sudan and the people who have been trying to rebuild the nation after more than 50 years of conflict. There is great hope, commitment and energy among its population but there are many challenges ahead. In many cases it is women who are facing the toughest challenges. But as I have found as a volunteer working with women across South Sudan, more and more women are finding their voices and becoming empowered to have their say in the future of this country...read more from Huffpost

Taliban publicly execute woman near Kabul: officials - July 8, 2012

A man Afghan officials say is a member of the Taliban shot dead a woman accused of adultery in front of a crowd near Kabul, a video obtained by Reuters showed, a sign that the austere Islamist group dictates law even near the Afghan capital...read more from Alarabiya

The UN recognises freedom of expression on the internet as a human right - July 6, 2012

On July 5th, 2012 the United Nations Human Rights Council approved a resolution stating that the right to freedom of expression on the internet should be protected by state parties. “The same rights that people have offline must also be protected online,” said the resolution...read more from APC

Nigerian Women Still At A Disadvantage July 5, 2012

The statistics on gender inequality in Nigeria are alarming and women continue to be at a grave disadvantage. According to a recent report by United Kingdom’s Department For International Development, DFID, Nigeria now ranks 118 of the gender inequality index and has one of the lowest rates of female entrepreneurship in Sub-Saharan Africa...read more from PM News

Human Rights Watch report outlines torture in Syrian detention centers - July 03, 2012

In an effort to suppress opposition against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Syria has been running a network of 27 torture centers, the international Human Rights Watch announced Tuesday in a report. The report, titled “Torture Archipelago,” is based upon interviews and testimonies from former detainees since March 2011, the group said...read more from FoxNews

Saudi Arabia’s small step toward women’s rights - July 3, 2012

Saudi Arabia’s 11th-hour decision to allow women to compete at this summer’s Olympic Games in London is an important step toward ending that country’s reprehensible gender apartheid. But for the change to have real meaning, the International Olympic Committee will need to keep up the pressure on the Gulf Kingdom...read more from The Globe and Mail

Groups Push for Asean to Publish Draft Human Rights Declaration - July 03, 2012

Human rights activists from Southeast Asia have asked Indonesia to push for the forthcoming Asean human rights declaration to be made public ahead of its adoption in November this year. The growing demands for the document to be published follows criticism that the draft had been written in secret without public consultation...read more from Jakarta Globe

Iraqi women face court-ordered virginity tests - July 2, 2012

BAGHDAD: Iraqi women face court-ordered virginity tests that often show they were virgins until marriage but shame them nonetheless, doctors at an institute that carries out the tests and a lawyer told AFP. Remaining a virgin until marriage can be an issue of life or death for women in the Middle East, where those who are seen as having dishonoured the family by having premarital sex are sometimes killed by male relatives...read more from tribune

Protecting children from violence, exploitation and abuse

All children have the right to be protected from violence, exploitation and abuse. Yet, millions of children worldwide from all socio-economic backgrounds, across all ages, religions and cultures suffer violence, exploitation and abuse every day. Millions more are at risk...read more from unicef

Who Represents the Women of Egypt? - July 2, 2012

A June 28th New York Times profile suggests that she is Naglaa Ali Mahmoud, wife of newly elected Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi. Mahmoud’s history and path to the position of Egyptian first lady make her a bit hard to pin down...read more from human rights first

UN experts call for advancing women’s human rights during political transitions - July 2, 2012

A group of independent United Nations experts today called for urgent actions to advance women’s human rights during political transitions, stressing that their equal participation is critical for any democratic and lasting change...read more from the UN

Justice Minister Apologises for Derogatory Remarks on Women Shelters

Afghanistan's Minister of Justice Habibullah Ghaleb apologised for statements he made last week calling women's shelters "centers of misconduct" and suggesting that women residing in them were prostitutes. Ghaleb expressed his regrets for his provocative remarks at a press conference in Kabul...read more from tolonews

Release your salary details, court orders NASS - June 26, 2012

ABUJA—A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, yesterday, ordered the Clerk of the National Assembly to release to a human rights group, Legal Defence and Assistance Project, LEDAP, details of the salary, emolument and allowances collected by legislators between 2007 and 2011. Trial judge, Justice B. Aliyu, gave the order following the suit by LEDAP against the leadership of National Assembly under the Freedom of Information Act...read more from vanguardngr

Saudi Arabia will enter women for Olympics - June 25, 2012

RIYADH - Saudi Arabia will allow its women athletes to compete in the Olympic Games for the first time ever in London this summer, the Islamic kingdom's London embassy said on its website. Human rights groups had called on the International Olympic Committee to bar Saudi Arabia from competing in London, citing its failure ever to send a woman athlete to the Olympics and its ban on sports in girls' state schools...read more from canoe

Rocking the cradle of hope - June 19, 2012

Much before the eye-opening first episode of Aamir Khan's chat show Satyamev Jayate, which brought the reality of sex-selective abortions to our drawing rooms and triggered a national debate, an initiative in Rajasthan's Udaipur has been doing its bit to save newborn girls...read more from the hindu

Girl brides abducted as fabled HIV cure - May 27, 2012

KwaCele, South Africa (CNN) - The landscape of the rural Eastern Cape in South Africa has a haunting beauty. A myriad of round turquoise huts scatter across the land in a series of endless villages. Yet these villages are also home to a terrible and devastating traditional practice that destroys children's lives and tears families apart. In these villages, girls as young as 12 are kidnapped by older men and forced to 'marry.' It is accepted as part of the Xhosa people's culture. It has continued unabated for decades...read more from CNN

Equality, non-interference, non-hierarchy: What the net should be - May 24, 2012

The UN Special Rapporteur on cultural rights Farida Shaheed made an important speech on internet governance in Geneva earlier in May 2012. She stressed the importance of upholding human rightsi principles online supporting the call of civil society for democratization of internet governance...read more from genderIT

In Turkey, Debating A Woman's Right To Bear Arms - May 19, 2012

In Turkey , hundreds of women die each year at the hands of a husband or family member, in a society that critics say too often ignores violence against women. After years of frustration, one organization has shaken up the debate with a controversial proposal: arming women and training them to defend themselves...read more from npr

Understanding domestic violence and abuse

Domestic violence and abuse are used for one purpose and one purpose only: to gain and maintain total control over you. An abuser doesn’t “play fair.” Abusers use fear, guilt, shame, and intimidation to wear you down and keep you under his or her thumb. Your abuser may also threaten you, hurt you, or hurt those around you...read more from helpguide

India: Hold Police to Account for Sexual and Other Assaults Attacks - May 14, 2012

(Mumbai) – Indian officials need to immediately open transparent and impartial criminal investigations into recent cases where police have assaulted women, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch called on the government of India to overhaul its policies and response to women, children, and transgender people who experience violence...read more from HRW

Workouts a necessity for women in absence of sports - May 13, 2012

In one of the big gyms in Jeddah hangs a poster on the wall. On it is written: “Exercise is a necessity, not a luxury.” Although this statement may be true, for Saudi women it is extremely difficult to do any sports. Not only is it not allowed for women to exercise in public, gyms in Saudi Arabia cannot get a commercial license from the General Presidency for Youth Welfare — who arranges this kind of sport licenses — to open a female section, as this sports body only caters to men...read more from arabnews

Morocco: Salafists Assault Woman Over Dress - May 12, 2012

Intense debate on personal freedoms renewed recently in Morocco after a young woman wearing a short modern dress in a Rabat market was assaulted by people described as Salafists...read more from eurasiareview

Digital Security: Drop-in centre of Ugandan sex worker organisation raided - May 11, 2012

On May 7, police authorities in the Ugandan city of Gulu – a city located approximately 320km north of Kampala by road with 150,000 inhabitants – ‘dropped by’ a sex worker drop-in centre. They raided the small office and arrested two staff and three members of the Women’s Organization Network for Human Rights Advocacy (WONETHA), a duly-registered group that runs the centre...read more from APC

KYRGYZSTAN: Bride kidnapping continues without legal sanctions

Talas Province, KYRGYZSTAN: Although bride kidnapping is illegal under Article 155 of Kyrgyzstan’s Criminal Code, prosecutions are almost unheard of. The state can intervene only if a complaint is filed directly by the victim. But, in many bride kidnapping cases, the woman is isolated within the home of the abductor, and must overcome daunting obstacles to contact her relatives or the police. Even if her family is aware that she has been kidnapped, they are usually powerless to press charges against the abductor on behalf of the woman. In conservative villages, opposing a bride kidnapping can also bring the family shame...read more from WNN

1,500 children in Nigerian village suffer lead-poisoning - May 11, 2012

International medical aid group Doctors Without Borders says that 1,500 children in a mining village in northwest Nigeria have suffered lead-poisoning and are not receiving care...read more from timeslive

Acid Attacks: Pakistani Women Retaliate? - May 11, 2012

It appears that a number of Pakistani women are embracing the use of acid as weapon against men. In Pakistan, these heinous acts have typically been perpetrated on women as revenge for “dishonoring” their husbands or fathers, but recent reports indicate a significant surge in the reversal of violence...read more from thedailyactivist

Worldwide, It's "More Dangerous to Be a Woman Than a Soldier in Modern Wars" - May 10, 2012

"It is now more dangerous to be a woman than to be a soldier in modern wars." These words were spoken by Major General Patrick Cammaert, the Deputy Force Commander of the United Nations Mission to the Democratic Republic of Congo, in 2008, as he described the the terrifying scorched earth rape strategy being employed in that country (and others like it). Not only is rampant sexual violence a human rights violation and war crime, but it is a recognized core security issue for international peace and conflict resolution...read more from Huffpost

Tortured Afghan teen on attackers: 'The same should be done to them' - May 9, 2012

The Afghan teen was married off at 13. She said her husband, a member of the Afghan Army, raped her. Enraged because she didn't immediately get pregnant, her in-laws locked her in a basement for months, torturing her with hot pokers and ripping out her nails. Ultimately, she said, they wanted to force her into prostitution as punishment for failing her obligation as a woman...read more from CNN

Africa’s Two Female Presidents Join Forces for Women - May 9, 2012

The only two female heads of state in Africa, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Malawian President Joyce Banda, have just committed to using their positions to improve the lives of women across the continent...read more from IPS

Pakistan: Former member of National Assembly issues fatwa against women human rights defenders - May 5, 2012

During the Friday sermon which took place on 4 May 2012 in Kohistan, Maulvi Abdul Haleem issued a fatwa and warned that women working in non-governmental organisations (NGOs) will not be allowed to enter Kohistan and that violators would be forcibly married off to locals...read more from frontlinedefenders

Egypt: New child marriage laws are a step backwards

An Egyptian MP has confirmed the drafting of a new law to lower the permitted age for girls to marry to just 14 from the current age 18. Egypt’s National Council of Women (NCW) has already appealed to parliament to stop the legislation, saying it rids women of their basic educational and employment rights...read more from Trust

Al-Qaeda targets Yemeni women for not wearing face veils

Al-Qaeda militants in southern Yemen have begun to harass women who do not wear the veil with Bikya Masr reporting on one instance of physical abuse as militants forced a woman to don the full face veil in Aden. The group, known as Ansar al-Sharia, believes a woman should follow the example of the Prophet’s wives and be fully covered, including her face...read more from alarabiya

India court: Insisting on condom not grounds for divorce - May 4, 2012

The Bombay High Court has ruled that a wife's refusal to have sex with her husband without a condom does not constitute grounds for divorce...read more from BBC

Man ‘throws step-daughter into well’ - May 3, 2012

The police in Edo State are investigating why a man, identified as Monday, allegedly threw his step-daughter, Favour, into an underground storage tank...read more from the nation

Not victims of tradition: Women speak out and advocate for girls facing abusive fates - May 2, 2012

Jasvinder Sanghera, 46, fled an imminent forced marriage to a stranger in England and became a high-profile activist, telling her story countless times and seeking to protect other female South Asian immigrants from similar fates. Fauziya Kassindja, 35, fled the threat of genital mutilation in Togo and won a landmark U.S. asylum case that brought world attention to the plight of African girls, yet she has shunned the limelight, preferring to forget her painful past and focus on family and business...read more from VNC

Human Rights Watch accuses Syria's Bashar Assad of war crimes
- May 2, 2012

BEIRUT -- As Syrian President Bashar Assad was negotiating recently with a United Nations envoy to end more than a year of violence in the country, his forces were committing war crimes in the northwest province of Idlib, a Human Rights Watch report charged Wednesday...read more from latimes

What Disrespect Looks Like to Women - May 1, 2012

Behavior that denigrates women is prevalent throughout the world. Women are wives, co-workers, sisters, mothers, friends, daughters and over half of the population, and most of these women will be disrespected for simply being a woman. When women's issues are regarded as secondary to those of men's -- as illustrated by the recent struggles over equal pay, basic survival concerns, availability of contraception, representation in corporations and governments -- then these human rights often go unnoticed and unsupported...read more from Huffingtonpost

Women's rights in Mali 'set back 50 years' by new 'Family Code' law - May 1, 2012

In this strongly patriarchal society, where many women need to ask permission from their husbands just to leave the house, women's groups have been pushing for change for the last 10 years. The hopes of women activists were pinned to a new Family Code to strengthen the legal rights of women...read more from the guardian

Now that It Doesn’t Have to Impress the EU, Turkey Could Curtail Women’s Rights - April 29, 2012

Turkey, formerly eager for an invite into the European Union clubhouse, has drifted away from the continent it has played historical boogeyman to in the wake of the Arab Spring, and gravitated towards the more conservative values of an Arab world it sees an opportunity to dominate. As a result, according to the New York Times' Dan Bilefsky, human rights groups worry that renewed conservative vigor in Turkey is starting to erode women's rights...read more from jezebel

The REAL ‘War Against Women’: forced abortion and gendercide in China - April 27, 2012

The real war against women has nothing to do with the morning-after pill or insurance coverage. This war transcends the debate between pro-life and pro-choice. It is not even being waged on U.S. soil. The real war against women is forced abortion and gendercide in China...read more from LifeSiteNews

Uganda: Maternal Health Case Puts Govt On the Spot - April 27, 2012

As Sylvia Nalubowa cried out in agony and begged the nurses to help her, she pledged to give them part of her kibanja (plot of land), hens and pigs if they could save her life...read more from allafrica

Narges Mohammadi - Human rights activist arrested April 24, 2012

Taghi Rahmani, husband of Narges Mohammadi, Deputy Head of Center for Human Rights Defenders, who was arrested on 22 April 2012 told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that Mohammadi's family have not been informed about her detention location...read more from iranian

Minister's bid to ban miniskirts using anti-pornography law angers Indonesian women - April 23, 2012

The religious affairs minister, Suryadharma Ali, wants to draw up "a set of universal criteria" on what constitutes pornography, "one of which will be when a woman wears a skirt above the knee"...read more from the National

Why Women Are a Foreign Policy Issue - April 23,2012

In the past, U.S. diplomacy and development efforts were conducted in a manner that was gender neutral at best. The United States regularly supported peace talks that left women out of negotiating rooms and treaty documents, an omission that weakened the chances of forging durable peace agreements...read more from foreign policy

Child marriages blight Bangladesh - April 22, 2012

Bangladesh has one of the highest rates of child marriage in the world, with 20% of girls becoming wives before their 15th birthday, even though 18 is the minimum age allowed by law. Why?..read more from BBC News

Addressing violence against all women - April 20, 2012

The bill to renew the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) faces a likely vote in the Senate next week, but its provisions that would assist immigrant women who are victims of violence have drawn some inexplicable opposition. The country’s single most important law for addressing domestic abuse, sexual violence, and stalking has offered life-saving protections to immigrant women since it first passed in 1994...read more from HRW

Kenya police executed terror suspect - April 20, 2012

NAIROBI, Kenya – Armed men pulled two passengers off a bus on the Kenyan coast earlier this month. The body of one man was found two days later with his eyes gorged out, nose chopped off and genitals missing, and a human rights group says Kenyan police executed the man — a terror suspect...read more from foxnews

Future fatwa by Kedah mufti or fatwa committee cannot be challenged in court - April 17, 2012

A new section - Section 22A - inserted in the enactment states that a fatwa decided by the mufti or Fatwa Committee, whether gazetted or not, cannot be challenged, appealed, reviewed, denied or questioned in any civil court or syariah court...read more from the star

Zimbabwe: Uproar over virginity testing at primary school

Women and children’s rights pressure groups have condemned virginity testing, a cultural tradition performed on young girls ostensibly to curb immoral behaviour before marriage...read more from asafeworldforwomen

No jail time for birth control - April 12, 2012

A few countries, including Honduras, have banned the emergency contraceptive pill, which delays ovulation and prevents pregnancy -- like ordinary birth control pills. But if this new bill passes, Honduras will be the only state in the world to punish the use or sale of emergency contraception with a jail term. Anyone -- teenagers, rape victims, doctors -- convicted of selling or using the morning-after pill could end up behind bars, in flagrant contravention of World Health Organisation guidelines...read more from avaaz

ACLU targets invasive strip searches of female prisoners - April 12, 2012

The American Civil Liberties Union said it plans today to urge the Michigan Department of Corrections to ban an invasive vaginal strip search that humiliates female prisoners...read more from Free Press

Urgent appeal: Abdulhadi Alkhawaja may be on his deathbed (64th day on hunger strike) - April 12, 2012

Prominent human rights activist Abdulhadi Alkhawaja called his family, and said that his health deteriorated last night and he was informed by doctors that he might go into a coma. He was given IV, which has kept him conscious but weak. His family and lawyer are still not allowed to visit him. His wife said he was allowed just a brief call in exchange that he will drink little water...read more from Bahrainrights

Women’s rights to be discussed at Istanbul forum - April 12, 2012

The 12th International Forum on Women’s Rights and Development will take place from April 19 to 22 in Istanbul under the theme of “Transforming Economic Power to Advance Women’s Rights and Justice.” The event is being organized by the Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID), an international feminist organization committed to achieving gender equality, sustainable development and women’s human rights...read more from Hürriyet Daily News

Unapologetic acid attackers: ‘She asked for it’ - April 11, 2012

As repulsive as it sounds, the attacker knows that a woman’s ‘market value’ and strength as a human being is utterly destroyed when she is either attacked with acid or raped. Add political connections to the equation, the woman is completely silenced. It is the ideal recipe for female subjugation...read more from tribune

In Spain, Women Enslaved by a Boom in Brothel Tourism

While the rest of Spain’s economy may be struggling, experts say that prostitution — almost all of it involving the ruthless trafficking of foreign women — is booming, exploding into public view in small towns and big cities. The police recently rescued a 19-year-old Romanian woman from traffickers who had tattooed on her wrist a bar code and the amount she still owed them: more than $2,500...read more from The New York Times

Stop safeguarding traditional values over women’s rights

For the first time in its history, the 56th Commission on the Status of Women (CSW)–a global policy-making body meant to promote women’s rights–ended with no agreed conclusions. Not since Beijing (4th World Conference on Women in 1995) has there been such a stalemate between women’s rights advocates and religious/conservative forces. Once more, culture and tradition were invoked to stall progress on critical women’s rights issues and provoke a political deadlock...read more from freethought

Joyce Banda, Malawi Vice President, Sworn In As President - April 7, 2012

Under the constitution, Banda will serve out Mutharika's term, which ends in early 2014. Mutharika first won office in 2004, and was re-elected in 2009...read more from huffpost

Egypt: Military Impunity for Violence Against Women - April 7, 2012

The verdict in the "virginity tests" trial is just one more example of the military’s failure to punish gross abuses against women and a reminder that the military justice system lacks the fundamental independence to remedy human rights abuses by the military...read more from HRW

Sudan: Comments By Country Official Could Lead to Further Violence, Warns UN Rights Chief - April 5, 2012

The top United Nations human rights official today warned that comments by the Governor of Sudan's Southern Kordofan state - who was filmed telling his soldiers not to bring rebels back alive - could amount to a serious crime and lead to an escalation of violence...read more from allafrica

Nepal's Rural Women Seek Justice

DAILEKH, Nepal, Apr 5, 2012 (IPS) - Women in Nepal’s remote rural areas stood shoulder-to-shoulder with their men during the bloody 1996-2006 civil war that overthrew an oppressive monarchy, but many now battle domestic violence at home...read more from IPS

Where Men Now Fear to Tread

UMOJA, Kenya, Apr 4, 2012 (IPS) - No man, except for those raised here as children, lives in Umoja village in Kenya; one has not for two decades. It is a village only of and for women, women who have been abused, raped, and forced from their homes...read more from IPS

EGYPT: Marginalized women set to receive identity card and human rights

CAIRO, Egypt: A brand new campaign in Egypt working with United Nations Egypt and numerous government and civil organizations inside the country have set up the “Your ID – Your Rights” campaign with a combined goal to help issue two million national identity cards to Egypt’s marginalized women, many who cannot vote or receive public services in Egypt...read more from WNN

Suu Kyi's party claims landslide win in Myanmar vote - April 1, 2012

YANGON (Reuters) - Pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi claimed on Monday a by-election landslide for her party, which she hoped would mark the beginning of a new era for Myanmar after a historic vote that could prompt the West to end sanctions...read more from Yahoonews

Malawi’s Women Seek Cultural Rights Changes - April 01, 2012

Women’s rights activists in Malawi say despite laws that protect them on paper, there are still societal barriers that treat women as second class citizens...read more from VOA

Jewish All-Girls School’s Facebook Ban Immodestly Goes Viral - April 1, 2012

A Hasidic all-girls school in Brooklyn this week ordered its students to either delete their Facebook accounts and pay $100 fine for being so openly immodest on the internet, or gtfo, for the very important reason, explained administrator Benzion Stock, "Girls are getting killed on the internet," just like in the Matrix...read more from jezebel

Ugandan rights groups upset at murderer's pardon

KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) — A decision by Uganda's president to pardon an Indian man who in 2000 was sentenced to die for the torture murder of his wife has generated fierce criticism from activists who say it sends the wrong message in a country where women's rights have long been abused...read more from AP

Africa’s Political Instability Hinders Maternal Health Progress

ABIDJAN , Mar 21, 2012 (IPS) - Political instability, civil strife and humanitarian crises in Africa have over the past decades reversed countless maternal health development gains on the continent, health experts warn...read more from IPS

AFRICA: Men ‘walk a mile in her shoes’ wearing women’s high-heels in protest

Bamenda, CAMEROON AFRICA: In a striking show of solidarity, a group of men from Cameroon who have named themselves ‘A Common Future,’ are showing the world they mean business when it comes to equality of the sexes in West Africa...read more from WNN

Human rights films becoming an integral part of cinema - March 26, 2012

Using cinema for political propaganda has always been a given. Now, it’s taking the coveted role of the human rights advocate. More and more films are shedding light on human rights violations around the world, reaching more audiences...read more from hurriyetdailynews

MDP detainees accuse police of sexual harassment: “What right do they have?” - March 25th, 2012

Four female detainees arrested on March 19 have accused police of sexual harassment, in audio and written statements obtained by Minivan News. Police officers allegedly tore women’s clothes during arrest and ordered female detainees to strip and squat multiple times at Dhoonidhoo Island detention center, according to the statements...read more from minivannews

Nearly 1,000 Pakistani women were victims of honour killings last year - March 22, 2012

A new report by Pakistan's leading human rights group has revealed at least 943 women were killed last year by their fathers, husbands or brothers for damaging their family name. Ninety-three of those killed were minors...read more from dailymail

Historic Transition in Libya Must Not Forget the Survivors of Sexual Violence - March 22, 2012

As the Security Council last week voted unanimously to extend the mandate of the UN's political mission in Libya, its members expressed their deep concern about sexual violence in the country. The United Nations' mandate includes supporting the government in promoting democracy, restoring public security, and explicitly mentions the monitoring and protection of human rights, particularly those of women and vulnerable groups, which I welcome...read more from huffingtonpost

Solomon Islands must act to end violence against women, UN rights expert says - March 19, 2012

The Solomon Islands must do more to protect women from violence and provide victims of gender inequality and discrimination access to justice, an independent United Nations human rights expert stressed after visiting the country...read more from UN

Honour killing: I was fed up with my daughter’s affair, says father - March 19, 2012

“I was fed up with constant complaints about my youngest daughter’s affair. On Friday, when my elder daughters told me about the boy at our house, I decided I would end it forever,” said Agyaram Jaiswal, 45, a general store owner in his statement to the Malwani police. Jaiswal was arrested on Saturday for the alleged murder of his 14-year-old daughter in a case of honour killing...read more from indianexpress

The "End of Stoning": Islamic Republic Style - March 12, 2012

The Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran in his latest report, published on March 7th, welcomed the omission of stoning as a punishment in the newly ratified Islamic Penal Code, but expressed his concern that severe punishments may still be issued at a judge's discretion in accordance with sharia law or fatwas... read more from huffingtonpost

'Freedom Of Information Will Make Leaders Accountable' - March 11, 2012

The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act since its enactment, been not so forthcoming in terms of impact on the society with few people has, understanding even its relevance...read more from leadership

"Emo" and gay kids targeted, killed in Iraq - March 11, 2012

(AP) BAGHDAD - Young people who identify themselves as so-called Emos are being brutally killed at an alarming rate in Iraq, where militias have distributed hit lists of victims and security forces say they are unable to stop crimes against the subculture that is widely perceived in Iraq as being gay...read more from cbsnews

Women Have New Weapon against Domestic Violence in Argentina

BUENOS AIRES, Mar 9, 2012 (IPS) - Women victims of domestic violence in a city in Argentina will be given an electronic device with a panic button that will bring them immediate assistance from the police...read more from ipsnews

A stain on our collective conscience

BAN Ki-moon told the Human Rights Council that he understood those who see sexual orientation and gender as “a sensitive subject”. The Secretary-General said, like many of his generation, he did not discuss these issues when he was growing up but has learned to speak out “because lives are at stake”...read more from ohchr

Fashola, Bakare, others decry high cases of rape, child abuse - March 9, 2012

LAGOS — Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State and Convener of the Save Nigeria Group, SNG, Pastor Tunde Bakare, yesterday, decried the increasing cases of rape in the country, saying it was high time urgent measures were taken to arrest the situation...read more from vanguardngr

IWD: Keeping Girls Safe at Home, at School and in Their Communities

In 2001, a 13-year old was abducted twice from her house in Ethiopia, raped and forced to sign a marriage contract with her rapist before she was able to escape the second time. At the time, both abduction and rape were criminal offences under Ethiopian law, but if marriage was subsequently agreed upon (no matter if it was coerced), the law stated that the husband would be exempt from criminal responsibility for his crimes...read more from IPS

Launch of World Atlas of Gender Equality in Education

To mark International Women’s Day, UNESCO and the UIS have jointly released the World Atlas of Gender Equality in Education, which includes over 120 maps, charts and tables featuring a wide range of sex-disaggregated indicators...read more from uis

Cop shoots 2 colleagues as hubby butchers wife - March 7, 2012

In Minna, a disagreement between a couple has led to the death of a housewife, as her husband, Usman Bege, 20, allegedly slaughtered his spouse, Hauwa, with a sharp knife while asleep...read more from vanguardngr

Australia National Plan to Reduce Violence Against Women & Their Children 2010 - 2022

The National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010-2022 (the National Plan) brings together the efforts of governments across the nation to make a real and sustained reduction in the levels of violence against women...read more from fahcsia

Honouring women in an Age of Participation - March 7, 2012

SECRETARY Clinton has noted that “What we are learning around the world is that if women are healthy and educated, their families will flourish. If women are free from violence, their families will flourish. If women have a chance to work and earn as full and equal partners in society, their families will flourish...read more from theborneopost

Afghan concern over 'guidelines for women' - March 6, 2012

Afghanistan's top religious council has said women should not mix with men in school, work or other aspects of daily life. The Ulema Council has also said that women should not travel without a male relative. The BBC's Orla Guerin has been hearing reaction to the ruling from people in Kabul...read more from BBC

Iraq Home of Series of Brutal Antigay Murders - March 6, 2012

A recent wave of violence in Iraq has resulted in the kidnapping, torture, and killing of about 40 people perceived to be gay or lesbian, with the murder weapon sometimes being a concrete block to the head...read more from shewired

Judge orders probe into killings of women in suburbs of Mexico City; activists say 100s slain - March 6, 2012

MEXICO CITY — A judge has ordered Mexican authorities to investigate the killings of women in the suburbs of Mexico City, reviving a sensitive issue related to a former governor who is a leading candidate in the presidential race...read more from washingtonpost

Wicked Father: Pours Hot Water On Daughter’s Private Part - March 5, 2012

A 33-year old man has poured hot water on her daughter’s private part, damaging part of her vagina, for licking soup in the pot. The incident happened in Ikorodu area of Lagos State, Southwest Nigeria...read more from 247nigerianewsupdate

Nigeria: As Boko Declares War On Formal Education - March 5, 2012

Maiduguri — Hafsat Aliyu, 11, has a dream to be distinct from her parents. The only way she believes she can do that is to do what none of her parents had the opportunity of doing: acquire formal education...read more from allafrica

Women call for greater representation in government - February 29, 2012

The Nigerian government has been called upon to tackle issues of gender inequality in the country with a view to giving a greater voice to women and enhance their contribution to good governance...read more from vanguardngr

Domestic Violence Against Women In Nigeria: The Present Position (4) - February 27, 2012

In 1992, the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women adopted the General Recommendation No. 19 on Violence against women. The Recommendation deals with violence against women and specifies the nature of government’s obligation to take comprehensive action to combat violence prepetrated by public authorities but emphasizes specifically that governments are responsible for eliminating violence against women by any person, organisation or enterprise ...read more from nigerianobservernews

PAKISTAN - Hindu Girls Abducted & Forced into Muslim Marriages - February 27, 2012

KARACHI - Sixteen-year-old Ameena Ahmed*, now living in the town of Rahim Yar Khan in Pakistan’s Punjab Province, does not always respond when her mother-in-law calls out to her...read more from IRIN

Nigeria: Curbing The Menace Of Human Trafficking - February 23, 2012

The global escalation of forced labour, human trafficking and violation of women and children`s rights is quite upsetting...read more from pmnews

A 'Favored Daughter' Fights For Afghan Women - February 22, 2012

Fawzia Koofi almost died on the day she was born, but survived against all odds and became the first female deputy speaker of Afghanistan's parliament. Koofi plans to run for president in two years, and in a new memoir, describes her hopes for the country's future...read more from wbur

Canada's response to missing aboriginal women and girls inadequate: Report - February 22, 2012

"The disappearances and murders of aboriginal women and girls in Canada are a national tragedy, rooted in racism and sexism," Laura Holland of the Aboriginal Women's Action Network said in a release about the report Wednesday... read more from torontosun

Domestic violence is crime in Pakistan - February 21, 2012

A landmark bill that makes violence against women and children a criminal offence that carries prison terms and fines has been passed by the Pakistan’s parliament...read more from deccanherald

Rwanda: Combating Violence Against Women With Drama - February 20, 2012

According to the Global Fund, war and militarism have a profound impact on women inside and outside of conflict situations. Sexual violence, intimidation and wife battery are just a few of the problems that women all over the world have to live with almost on a daily basis...read more from allafrica

UK: Father calls for domestic violence law change - February 20, 2012

A man whose daughter was murdered by her violent boyfriend has handed in a petition at Downing Street calling for a change in the law to protect women from domestic abuse...read more from guardian

Switzerland Weighs 'Zero Tolerance' Approach To Forced Marriages - February 20, 2012

'Coercion' is already a crime under Swiss law. But a new bill coming up before parliament would single out coercion in the form of forced marriages. Not surprisingly, debate over the issue is bound to be highly charged -- and about much more than just marriage...read more from worldcrunch

Rights groups want more education on FoI Act - February 16, 2012

LAGOS – Civil Society Organisations, have called for proactive measures to ensure that Nigerians understand the usage of the Freedom of Information Act, FoI, 2011, noting that it will increase citizens level of participation in governance...read more from vanguardngr

Cameroon Rape Victims Confront Legal Gauntlet

Sophie Mixte, who is in her 30s, says she was raped three times growing up. But it wasn't until the third incident that her parents found out and reported it to the police...read more from womensenews

Forced Marriage and Honour Killing Checksheet

Forced marriages and honour killings are often intertwined. Marriage can be forced to save honour, and women can be murdered for rejecting a forced marriage....read more from thepixelproject

On the Internet Everyone is a Journalist - February 15, 2012

To speak one’s mind is a human right, while to hold one’s tongue is against the basic tenets of democracy. Article 19 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights declares that everyone has “the right to freedom of opinion and expression,” and the right to “seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.” The notion of citizen journalism enables everyday people to voice their opinions, which supports the fundamental elements of democracy...read more from thejakartaglobe

The human rights abuses and conflict in Somalia - February 10, 2012

The obligations and duties that exist for both government and armed groups in Somalia under the international human rights and humanitarian law provide a framework for discussion of human rights abuse that reduces the risk of falling in to a debate on which side is some how “worse” or “better” than the other...read more from raxanreed

Historic Gain for Women in Pakistan as Women’s Commission Gains Autonomous Status - February 7, 2012

On 2 February 2012, the Pakistan Senate unanimously approved the “National Commission on the Status of Women Bill 2012″ to protect women’s rights against every kind of discrimination...read more from UNwomen

Talking with Texts: How Cellphones Empower Deaf Children in Uganda - February 7, 2012

Kids text all the time – at school, on the bus, even when you’re trying to talk to them. It can be annoying. But imagine if a child couldn’t communicate at all – that’s when a mobile can become a lifeline. In some developing countries, children who are deaf don’t have access to special education, technology or even sign language teaching...read more from newswatch

Anti FGM Law Has Come To Free The Girl-Child From Cultural Chains - February 6, 2012

Are laws sufficient to eliminate the practice of FGM in Kenya? The laws are sufficient. The problem is that people do not adherence to the laws. If only we even followed the Children’s Act (2001), FGM would have been a forgotten case...read more from the star

Supporting Adolescent Orphan Girls to Stay in School as HIV Risk Prevention

Using a randomised controlled trial in rural eastern Zimbabwe, the researchers tested whether comprehensive support to keep orphan adolescent girls in school could reduce HIV risk...read more from comminit

Afghan police: Man kills wife for giving birth to daughter instead of son - February 1, 2012

Sher Mohammed, 29, married his 22-year-old wife, Storay, four years ago, police said. The couple had three daughters, the last of whom was born three months ago, said Khanabad district police chief Sufi Habib. After the youngest daughter was born, Mohammed blamed his wife for not being able to deliver a boy...read more from CNN

Twitter's Country Specific Censorship May Be Good for Human Rights - January 30, 2012

Twitter announced a new censorship policy recently that would allow the company to block Tweets on a country by country basis. If, for example, Germany wanted to block a Tweet it believed violated copyright, that Tweet would only be made unavailable to Germans. Twitter will block Tweets in a country "In the face of a valid and applicable legal order."..read more from Technorati

All 3 guilty in Shafia murder trial; judge condemns twisted concept of honour - January 29, 2012

Three members of an Afghanistan-born Montreal family have been found guilty of killing three daughters and a co-wife in what the judge describes as "cold-blooded, shameful murders" resulting from a "twisted concept of honour."...read more from Yahoo News

Domestic violence laws are not enough: Rights groups - January 27, 2012

Colombian domestic violence laws will not work as long as attackers go unpunished, said women's groups Friday. Responding to a raft of new government measures aimed at preventing violence against women, NGOs told Colombia Reports that the real issue was not being tackled...read more from colombiareports

Revolution, Women And Social Media in The Middle East - January 27, 2012

"The power of women is in their stories. They are not theories, they are real lives that, thanks to social networks, we are able to share and exchange," said Egyptian-American activist Mona el-Tahawey, kicking off a summit that brought more than a hundred of the Middle East's leading female activists together in Cairo...read more from huffingtonpost

Impunity is a blank cheque: Jody Williams - January 26, 2012

IMPUNITY is the key to decades of oppression, disappearances, murders. Impunity gives a “blank check” to the government to continue its oppression...read more from nobelwomensinitiative

A decline of human rights in Pakistan - January 25, 2012

Life in Pakistan is getting more precarious for civilians with an increase in targeted killings, abductions and attacks by the Taliban and other militant groups last year...read more from ABC

Rights activists laud passage of women’s commission bill - January 23, 2011

ISLAMABAD: Women rights activists on Sunday lauded the passage of National Commission on Women Bill by National Assembly, holding it as a landmark achievement of the government towards women emancipation...read more from dailytimes

New restrictions limit women’s rights in Iraq - January 22, 2012

A new regulation by the women affairs coordinator in the Iraqi Ministry of Oil has raised many campaigns of protest by Iraqi women and human rights activists. The regulation forbid women working in the ministry of wearing dresses, skirts, modern shoes, trousers, and colorful clothes...read more from mideastyouth

Malawian women protest over 'trouser attacks'- January 20, 2012

Hundreds of people have protested in Blantyre in Malawi about attacks on women for wearing trousers.

Some women were this week beaten and stripped by vendors on the streets of the capital, Lilongwe, and Blantyre for not wearing traditional dress...read more from BBC

Mali rolls back women's rights - January 20, 2012

Bamako - Mali's President Amadou Toumani Toure has signed a new family law, an official said Friday, after it was revised due to pressure from Muslim groups to cut out sections providing for greater women's freedoms...read more from New24

Egyptian Court Ruling on “Virginity Tests” a Win For Women - January 17, 2012

By now, almost everyone has heard the about the 18 women protestors in Egypt’s Tahrir Square who this past spring were detained, beaten, given electric shocks, strip searched and forced to submit to “virginity tests.”...read more from amnestyusa

In This Indian Village Voting By Women Is A Taboo - January 12, 2012

In Sehruwa - a village in India's Uttar Pradesh state, women have never exercised one of their most important constitutional rights: vote Ironically, Sehruwa is only 144 km away from Lucknow - the state capital where Mayawati - the state's (woman) chief minister resides...read more from groundreport

New Prime Minister Surprises Moroccans With Support for Abortion - January 11, 2012

CASABLANCA — Less than two months after winning power in Morocco’s elections, the moderate Islamic party of Prime Minister Abdelilah Benkirane is surprising opponents by moving to relax the country’s strict abortion laws...read more from nytimes

Revolution hasn't made Egypt safer for women - January 10, 2012

LONDON (TrustLaw)--Despite an increasing feeling of empowerment experienced by many Egyptian women during and after the revolution, they continue to be sexually harassed and abused by men in public on a daily basis, as recent coverage of events in Cairo—from “virginity tests” conducted by the military to male assaults on female protesters—illustrated...read more from trustlaw



Women's health advocates decry Plan B decision - December 7, 2011

Abortion rights groups and women's health advocates are expressing disappointment and anger today after the Health and Human Services Department decided to keep the Plan B morning-after pill from being sold over the counter...read more from CBS

Will the Arab Spring backfire on women? - December 7, 2011

While the Arab Spring has provided women with space to make their voices heard, “It has also become clear that there are real risks, especially [for woman] in places like Egypt and Libya,” said Head of Human Rights Watch’s Women Division Liesl Gerntholtz...read more from nowlebanon

Youth Minister convenes conference on rape - December 5, 2011

A statement issued by his Senior Assistant on Media, Julius Ogunro quoted the minister as saying that “rape and violence against women or any group of persons has no place in our culture”.

The statement noted that the conference, themed: “Youth and the Challenges of Rape”, is aimed at effectively engaging young men as ambassadors and watchdogs, to stop violence against young women in the country...read more from dailytimes

Saudis fear there will be ‘no more virgins’ and people will turn gay if female drive ban is lifted - December 1, 2011

Repealing a ban on women drivers in Saudi Arabia would result in ‘no more virgins’, the country’s religious council has warned.

A ‘scientific’ report claims relaxing the ban would also see more Saudis - both men and women - turn to homosexuality and pornography...read more from dailymail

“If women do not get their rights, this is not a democracy” - November 30, 2011

In the weeks leading up to Monday’s historic election in Egypt, WLP talked with leading Egyptian women’s rights activist Amal Abdel Hadi about the upcoming elections and the future of women’s rights in the country. The following is a portion of our conversation...read more from WLP

Forced marriage in the UK: hidden from view - November 29, 2011

Plans by the government to criminalise forced marriage in the UK will put women and girls at even greater risk of violence. Forced marriages can only be tackled from within and by the community, with sufficient resources to support this work, says Sajda Mughal..read more from opendemocracy

Papua New Guinea - Bill Passes To Increase Number Of Women Parlimentarians

November 23, 2011 - After two years of political pressure, Papua New Guinea has passed a law to boost its number of female parliamentarians, a move hailed by political activists as the breaking of a new dawn...read more from Yahoo

“16 Days of Activism against Gender Based Violence”
November 25th – December 10th 2011

Theme: “From Peace in the Home to Peace in the World: Let's Challenge Militarism and End Violence against Women.”

Concept Note

Gender-based violence is a universal reality existing in all societies regardless of economic status, class, culture or any other diversity. So many women have, and are experiencing this form of violence which has adversely affected their well being as well as productivity in their homes, communities and places of work. This problem in a country like Nigeria is mainly due to the very patriarchal nature of the society and obnoxious cultural beliefs, which suppress women and leaves them to suffer in silence. These inhumane acts have continued to prevent women from achieving their maximum potentials and compromise their physical and psychological integrity...read more from BAOBAB's press room

AI Urges African Governments to Legislate Freedom of Information Law - November 9, 2011

During the 50th Session of the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights held at the Sheraton Hotel and Spa in Brufut, the Working Group on African Platform on Access to Information (APAI), on the 29th of October 201, urged all the African Governments to endeavour and passed a law on access to information...read more from windhoekplus20

U.S. soldier gets 10 years in prison for rape in South Korea - November 1, 2011

(CNN) -- A South Korean court sentenced a U.S. soldier to 10 years in prison for raping an 18-year-old South Korean girl in September, court officials said Tuesday...read more from CNN

Same Sex Marriage Bill: CAN faults Senate’s invitation - November 1, 2011

LAGOS — UMBRELLA body of Christians in Nigeria, the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, has dissociated itself from a purported invitation by the Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters over two bills on Transfer of convicted Offenders and Same Sex Marriage which are before the National Assembly...read more from vanguardngr

Baby 7 Billion: A Milestone for Girls' Survival Rights - October 31, 2011

Hundreds of thousands of female foetuses are being terminated in India every year even though sex-selective abortions and use of ultrasound technology for foetal gender-determination is illegal in the country...read more from sacbee

Horror of South Africa's 'corrective rape' - October 28, 2011

Zukiswa Gaca was 15 when she ran away from her home in rural South Africa after being raped. In Khayelitsha, near Africa's 'gay capital' she was again targeted again, a victim of what's called 'corrective rape.'...read more from CNN

Rape of Female CORPS Member: Suspects Remanded in Prison Custody - October 19, 2011

Two suspects accused of raping a female member of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in Kano State have been remanded in prison custody by a Kano Chief Magistrate Court...read more from Nigerianbestforum

All Africa Games Endorse UN Secretary-General’s UNiTE Campaign - October 18, 2011

In an Olympic village and selected sports events, the campaign distributed banners, posters, flyers, red cards and T-shirts, reaching nearly 20,000 athletes and spectators. As a symbol for faults in games, the red cards carried messages such as: “having sex with girls under age,” “having sex with a woman against her will even if she is your wife,” ”beating a woman,” and “using status and money to control women.”...read more from UNwomen

Papua New Guinea: Facebook Campaign Seeks Justice for Abused Wife of PNG Cop - October 14, 2011

Yes, the PNG police methods are extremely brutal, but the legal system ignores their crimes. According to a Human Rights Watch report, "police rapes of a 7-year-old girl in 2005, and a 6-year-old in 2006, attracted public outrage but no convictions."..read more from huff post

Australia Appoints Global Ambassador for Women & Girls - October 14, 2011

Australia will be at the forefront of global efforts to promote the role of women and girls with the creation of an Ambassador to advocate on their behalf..read more from Australian Government

Nigeria: Violence Against Women (I) - October 13, 2011

The network of human rights activists in Nigeria have been going through one of the most shocking events in contemporary times...read more from allafrica

Women and Men in Partnership: Eradicating Gender Violence - October 13, 2011

The relationship between women and men, and girl and boys needs to change. Did you know that women and girls ages 15 to 44 are more likely to be maimed or killed by men than by malaria, cancer, war or traffic accidents combined? ..read more from huff post

Passionate Ugandan midwife takes her message abroad - October 12, 2011

A midwife from Katine village in Uganda is fronting a campaign to draw attention to Africa's high maternal mortality rates and advocate for ways to reduce it...read more from the guardian

Nigeria: The Limits of Freedom of Information Act - October 11, 2011

Five months ago when President Goodluck Jonathan signed into law the Freedom of Information bill, many Nigerians were quick to observe that the document comes with so many deficiencies...read more from allafrica

Queen's cousin campaigns to block 'human right' to abortion - October 10, 2011

The law legalising abortions in Britain should never have been passed, the Queen's first cousin says today as he launches a campaign against "subversive" attempts to make the procedure a human right...read more from Telegraph

PAKISTAN: When the police take on the duties of the mullahs a young girl is married to a man of 85

October 3, 2011 - Though the marriage of a child is unlawful under the laws of Pakistan the police took the shelter behind Shariah Law to facilitate the union between an 85-year-old man and a minor of 12 years.

Uganda: The Injectable Contraceptive That Could Double the Risk of Women Contracting HIV - October 6, 2011

A popularly contraceptive could double the risk of contracting HIV among users as well as increase chances of transmitting it to their partners. According to a report in the Lancet journal, a study in seven sub Saharan African countries indicated a higher infection rate among women using the hormonal contraceptive administered by injection every three months...read more from allafrica

Nigeria: 'Over 35,000 Enrolled in FCT HIV Treatment Centres'- October 6, 2011

The Project Manager, FCT Agency for the Control of AIDS, Dr. Uche Okoro, has disclosed that there are over 35,000 persons living with HIV, currently enrolled in the 20 ante-retroviral treatment (ART) programmes of the FCT administration...read more from allafrica

Journalism - one of the world’s most dangerous professions - October 5, 2011

“One day three years ago, I sat down with all my team and said, “Let’s make a safety plan. In case I get murdered, this is what you will do.” Because that’s what you have to do – we are in a high risk job, and if you don’t accept that, you could be killed and nothing would be done… I know I’m messing with organized crime: I’m not a kid anymore.” Lydia Cacho, interview with “Mother Jones”, a non-profit web and print news organization in the U.S., May 2007..read more from UN

Group kicks against same gender marriage prohibition bill - October 2, 2011

The Coalition for the Defense of Sexual Rights in Nigeria (CDSRN), a non governmental organization has kicked against the proposed Same Gender Marriage Prohibition Bill currently being debated upon in the National Assembly...read more from 234next

Guns Aimed Increasingly at Women

PESHAWAR, Sep 30, 2011 (IPS) - Guns available in new abundance in the troubled north of Pakistan are increasingly being used on women in ‘honour’ killings and domestic disputes, according to local reports...read more from IPS

Afghan women risk most in peace talks - October 02, 2011

A new Oxfam report warns that hard-won rights for women in Afghanistan could be lost in upcoming talks to make peace with the Taliban.

Stakes are high for Afghanistan’s women, who fear their rights could slip away in a quick-fix bargain for peace, according to aid agency Oxfam..read more from The Star

Philipine police arrest 8 Nigerians over alleged sex trade involving minors - October 1, 2011

A scandalous allegation of having sex with minor Philippine girls have been made against 8 out of the 96 Nigerian boys from Niger Delta who were on the sponsorship of the Federal Government of Nigeria Amnesty programme in far-away Philippine...read more from vanguardngr

Suffering in silence - September 30, 2011

According to the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, 791 women became victims of “honour killings” in 2010.

MULTAN: Being beaten almost daily by her husband is a routine part of Saadia Bibi’s life. “Ever since I was married nearly seven years ago, I have been slapped, punched or kicked virtually every day. Once or twice my husband has burnt me with cigarettes,” she told IRIN, in Multan, displaying the distinct, circular scars on her shoulders and legs...read more from DAWN

Plan urges Commonwealth Leaders to end early and forced marriage - September 29, 2011

Ahead of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Perth
Australia, the Royal Commonwealth Society and Plan International have issued a joint call for action in a new policy paper...read more from Plan

Rights group decries flogging sentence for female Saudi driver - September 28, 2011

(CNN) -- Saudi King Abdullah announced greater political participation for women in the conservative kingdom this week, but Tuesday, a human rights group decried the promised reforms in light of a flogging sentence for a woman who dared to drive a car...read more from CNN

Lebanon's Minister of Labor Issues Decrees Facilitating the Right to Work for Spouses and Children of Lebanese Women - September 28, 2011

In an unprecedented step towards challenging discrimination against women, especially in Lebanon, the current Minister of Labor, Charbel Nahhas, announced during a press conference held on September 27 a series of reforms which were introduced on a number of clauses of the labor laws, aiming to eliminate various forms of discrimination and injustice against non-Lebanese children and spouses of Lebanese women...read more from learningpartnership

Mexico supreme court upholds state’s right-to-life amendment, making abortion ban state issue - September 28 , 2011

MEXICO CITY — Mexico’s supreme court on Wednesday let stand a right-to-life amendment to the Baja California state constitution that says life begins at conception and effectively bans elective abortions in the northern border state...read more from washingtonpost

Nigeria - Journalists body set to test FOI Act - September 26, 2011

The International Press Institute (IPI) is to cooperate with its Nigerian chapter to test the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act 2011 which came into effect in May.

“Nigeria is the second country in Africa to enact such a legislation, coming after Liberia,” the IPI Director, Alison McKenzie, said in Taipei on Monday.. ..read more from 234NEXT

Liberia: Grand Bassa County Poised for First Female Senator - September 26, 2011

Karnga is campaigning on three thematic areas which she has outlined as, Equal Participation of women, Women Peace and Security and Accountability in Leadership. She said, "since the establishment of Grand Bassa County in 1847 the County has never produced a female senator and has therefore set her eyes on the seat in order to bridge the gap and redeem the women."...read more from allafrica

Saudi Arabia - King grants women the right to vote - September 25, 2011

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia on Sunday granted women the right to vote and run in future municipal elections, the biggest change in a decade for women in a puritanical kingdom that practices strict separation of the sexes, including banning women from driving...read more from Newyorktimes

Kuwait - Unmarried women to receive housing loans - September 25, 2011

Kuwait's Savings and Credit Bank will start accepting public housing welfare applications for unmarried Kuwaiti women early next month, it was announced here on Saturday...read more from gitm

South Sudan: Children snatched out of their homes - September 22, 2011

In villages across South Sudan children are being snatched out of their homes in the dead of night, never to see their families again. Some are used as soldiers by their captives in cattle wars with rival communities, while others are sold to families with no children..read more from afronline

Kenya - FGM Outlawed but Persists - Kenya - September 19, 2011

In a bid to retain culture and due to the greed of men who profit by marrying off their daughters, some communities in Kenya still practice Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).

Section 14 of The Children’s Act of 2001 in Kenya protects children against harmful cultural practices under which FGM falls. Though this law has been in place for a decade, the practice is still rampant, especially among pastoral communities where even a girl may demand FGM since she has been brought up believing it to be part of her initiation to maturity.

Pakistan - New floods leave many women & children homeless - September 14, 2011

Heavy rains and flooding have killed hundreds of people and displaced hundreds of thousands in Pakistan with monsoon rain crippling the country’s largest city, Karachi . About 900 villages have been submerged in the waters, and some 100,000 homes have been utterly destroyed...read more from washingtonpost

Money, religion & patriarchy pose problems for female politicians – Favour Irabor - September 4, 2011

It’s over four months now since the last general elections, but Nigerian women politicians and even stakeholders are yet to recuperate from the shock of its outcome. Unlike previous elections, women vied enmass for various political offices, but few of them got in! As a response to this fall which has also translated into an abysmal reduction in the representation of women in political offices(apart from the ministerial offices), the question of ‘what went wrong?’ has continued to take centre-stage at most women gatherings. Here, women’s human rights activist, a lawyer, (Ms) Favour Irabor, Programme Officer, Baobab for Women’s Human Rights, reviews the circumstances surrounding Nigerian women in politics as she calls on stakeholders to urgently begin preparations for the 2015 elections...read more from Vanguard

Protecting Women from Domestic Violence - September 1, 2011

Hamiyet, a member of Turkey’s Kurdish minority, was a 15-year-old newlywed when her husband began beating her every evening after work. He hit her when she was pregnant with each of their nine children, and he raped her almost nightly. She sought help from the police, but they always sent her back home, more concerned with preserving “family unity” than with her safety...read more from HRW

Landmark case in Uganda on maternal deaths - September 2, 2011

KAMPALA, Uganda (TrustLaw)—During the 12 hours it took for Jennifer Anguko to bleed to death in a Ugandan hospital due to complications of childbirth, not one doctor or nurse attended to her. Instead, her husband himself had to change her bloody sheets...read more from trustlaw

Toilet Queue Starts Women's Day in Delhi Slums - August 30, 2011

Thousands of women in the sprawling shantytowns outside of New Delhi face a long queue for a grimy toilet and dirty water. Even though the government recognizes women's special need for sanitation and water, no special provisions are made...read more from WeNews

Revealed: the shocking truth of domestic abuse of disabled women - August, 26 2011

DOMESTIC abuse affects one in four women in their lifetime, but very little is known about the effects and frequency of attacks on disabled women. What is known is this: disabled women are reportedly twice as likely as non-disabled women to experience domestic violence; are less likely to report it, and are more likely to experience it for longer before attempting to escape...read more from Peterboroughtoday

Women’s march to power is painfully slow - August 20 2011

It has taken Kenyan women nearly three decades of struggle for rights, activism, gender sensitisation, capacity-building, lobbying and mobilising to take up various political leadership positions...read more from Nation

South Africa: Sex, Drugs and Women’s rights - August 19, 2011

The South African government should work with communities to curb the culture of drug and alcohol abuse which are directly linked to escalating HIV/AIDS prevalence and gender-based violence..read more from ngopulse

Breast ironing tradition targeted in Cameroon

Every morning before school, nine-year-old Terisia Techu would undergo a painful procedure. Her mother would take a burning hot pestle straight out of a fire and use it to press her breasts...read more from CNN

LEBANON: Hotchpotch of religious laws restricts basic rights

“As a women, I am not equal to my brother, husband or male friend," Rita Chemaly, a researcher and women’s activist in the capital Beirut, said. "My state doesn’t guarantee my rights. The constitution says that all Lebanese are equal, yet the laws do not [guarantee this]."..read more from IRIN

Women Stand Up for Their Rights in the New Republic of South Sudan - August 18, 2011

Just a few days after independence was declared, the South Sudan Women Lawyers Association (SSWLA) issued a rallying call to supporters of women’s rights, demanding greater equality and human rights for the women of South Sudan. The association congratulated President Salva Kiir Mayardit and all the South Sudanese people on attaining independence, however they also called on the government to step up their efforts in promoting and protecting the rights of women and girls...read more from vadvert

International Human Rights Court Says Governments Must Ensure Timely Access to Maternal Health Services - August 18, 2011

In 2002, Alyne da Silva Pimentel, a 28-year-old Afro-Brazilian woman, died after being denied basic medical care to address complications in her pregnancy. Her death might be like any one of the other hundreds of thousands of women who die of complications of pregnancy or unsafe abortion each year worldwide, but for one thing: It was taken to court...read more from rhrealitycheck

Engaging Men in the Effort to End Violence Against Women - August 17, 2011

As more women in developing nations are empowered to promote their own advancement and security, NGOs can't forget those who have the power to instantly change the treatment of women -- men...read more from Huff

Seclusion during menstruation continues in Nepal - August 17, 2011

KATHMANDU, NEPAL ­– Every month for the last 24 years Belu Damai, 40, from Bhairavsthan, a village in Nepal’s Far-Western region, spent her several days a month, during her menstrual cycle in a cowshed..read more from TrustLaw

Women seek to establish themselves during transitional period - August 15, 2011

CAIRO: Six months on, women say they are yet to reap the benefits of a revolution that explicitly called for equality and social justice, with women missing from key positions that are helping shape the country in its transitional phase...read more from thedailynewsegypt

Tunisia; Election law gives women equal chance - August 12, 2011

(WOMENSENEWS) August 9, 2011--In the next few months, Tunisian women may have a real opportunity as candidates and voters to participate in the country's new, post-revolution, electoral system...read more from TrustLaw

Labour nightmare for E Cape women - August 10, 2011

Pregnant women in the Eastern Cape often have to buy nurses gifts - including lunches of fried chicken - to receive medical attention.

This is one of the shocking allegations contained in a Human Rights Watch report entitled Stop Making Excuses: Accountability for Maternal Health Care in South Africa, which was released on the eve of Women's Day...read more from timeslive

Cameroon's Kah Walla Presses Her Presidential Bid - August 10, 2011

BAMENDA, Cameroon (WOMENSENEWS)--Edith Kabbang Walla, 45, popularly known here as Kah Walla, is Cameroon's only female candidate for the upcoming October presidential elections...read more from womensenews

MOROCCO - Women Call for more Literacy, Equality, Rights + - August 10, 2011

CASABLANCA, Aug 10 (IPS) - Since the beginning of protests in Morocco on Feb. 20 women have been at the vanguard. Many of the spokespersons of the protest movement have been women - observers and activists see this as a new phase of feminine emancipation in this North African country. read more from TrustLaw

RWANDA - Women lead for Progress, Peace, MDG'S

Seventeen years ago last Sunday, the Rwandan genocide came to a bloody end. In one of the of the most horrifying 100 days in human history, inter-ethnic tensions stoked by political propaganda escalated into full-scale civil war between two tribes, the Hutus and the Tutsis. Over the span of 100 days, more than 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed...read more from TrustLaw

Iran Parliment Further Delays Consideration of Bill to Amend Family Protection Act on Polygamy

The Iran Parliament has once again delayed consideration of a controversial bill to amend the Family Protection Act, which would give Iranian men the right to multiple marriages without first proving adequate financial resources..read more from radiozamaneh

Kuwait University Continues Gender-Baised Admission Policy

KUWAIT: Despite heavy criticism, the Kuwait University is still adamant on retaining its gender-biased admissions policy. The policy sets different standards for university applicants based on their gender. As reported earlier in the Kuwait Times, the policy requires female students to have relatively higher general scores in order to be admitted when compared with male students. In recent updates, nine female students were reportedly refused to be accepted in the majors of medicine and dentistry, despite scoring high in their first year in university. The students were advised to try other majors..read more from Kuwaittimes

SA women not aware of rights - August 7, 2011

Despite the Constitution declaring all South Africans free and equal, hundreds of women at a grassroots level are still not aware of their basic human rights...read more from ECR

Religious groups object to covering birth control - August 7, 2011

WASHINGTON (AP) — They defied the bishops to support President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. Now Catholic hospitals are dismayed the law may force them to cover birth control free of charge to their employees...read more from AP

From child bride to Senegal rights crusader - August 5, 2011

Keur Issa - Fatou Diakhate seemed so young when she was given away in marriage that her husband, Mori Diarra, took pity on the 13-year-old...read more from iol

A step backward for Puerto Rican women - August 4, 2011

Through this ruling the Puerto Rican Supreme Court is sending the message that some women may not deserve equal protection from the state. This is the wrong message to put forward in a society where interpersonal violence is a serious problem...read more from HRW

China - Bride's Death Spurs Anti-Violence Law - August 3, 2011

SHENZHEN, China (WOMENSENEWS)–When other brides would have been enjoying their honeymoons, Dong Shanshan was calling the police.In the next 10 months, her calls became more and more desperate as her husband, Wang Guangyu, repeatedly beat her till she passed out and kidnapped her when she escaped. Her eight calls to the police did nothing. They declined to intervene in the affairs of a married couple...read more from womenenews

“Historic victory”: Insurance companies must cover birth control - August 3, 2011

Starting next year, insurers will be required to fully cover, with no copays, contraception and other preventive health services for women, the Obama administration announced Aug 1...read more from peoplesworld

Child Pornography, Sexual Abuse International Network Probe - August 3, 2011

WASHINGTON – Seventy-two people have been charged with participating in an international child pornography network that prosecutors say used an online bulletin board called Dreamboard to trade tens of thousands of images and videos of sexually abused children...read more from foxnews

NEPAL: Emerging from menstrual quarantine

Every month, for one week,14-year-old Kamala Vishwarkarmas returns from school to sleep alone in a dark, windowless mud hut. She is forbidden from entering her family's house during her menstrual cycle for fear of what might happen...read more from asafeworldforwomen

MOROCCO - First Woman Taxi Driver

She is the first female driver behind the wheel of a grand taxi in Morocco. In Casablanca Fatima Bennadi has become an institution: with colleagues and friends greeting her at every crossroads or at the taxi rank, her white Mercedes is part of the urban landscape...read more from parallelozero

RWANDA: Women parliamentarians outnumber men - July 27, 2011

Rwanda is the first country in the world where women outnumber men in parliament, with women occupying 45 out of 80 seats. However, despite this, experts say that the country still needs a gender equality perspective on how national resources and programmes are implemented...read more from Afronline

NIGERIA: Changing attitudes to contraception - July 27, 2011

Health workers say an apparent rise in contraceptive use in Nigeria stems largely from a willingness by traditional and religious leaders in some regions to use their influence in promoting reproductive health...read more from IRIN

Iraqi Kurdistan: Law Banning FGM a Positive Step - July 25, 2011

(Beirut) - A Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) law that bans female genital mutilation (FGM) is a crucial step in eradicating the practice, Human Rights Watch said today. The Family Violence Bill, approved by the Kurdistan parliament on June 21, 2011, includes several provisions criminalizing the practice, recognized internationally as a form of violence against women. Several studies by the government and non-governmental organizations estimate that the prevalence of FGM among girls..read more from HRW

Laws "Not Enough" to Tackle Violence Against Native Women - July 25, 2011

WASHINGTON, Jul 25, 2011 (IPS) - Juana Majel Dixon, first vice president of the National Congress of American Indians, said earlier this year that, "Young women on reservations live their lives in anticipation of being raped…They talk about 'how I will survive my rape‚' as opposed to not thinking about it at all."..read more from IPS

Court Downgrades Rape to "Fit of Passion" - July 25, 2011

MANAGUA, Jul 25, 2011 (IPS) - The rape of a young woman that has become a symbolic case in Nicaragua was ruled a "crime of passion" by the Supreme Court in a verdict that is suspected to have political overtones...read more from IPS

Nigeria: Amnesty International Wants States To Domesticate FOI Law - July 24, 2011

ABUJA, July 24, (THEWILL) - Amnesty International has called on state governments to “as a matter of law and principle embrace the Freedom of Information Act and ensure its direct application to their states.”...read more from THEWILL

Lagos Version Of Freedom Of Information Act To Be Enacted Soon, Says Fashola - July 21, 2011

Jul 21, 2011 - Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN), Thursday declared that the Government has taken necessary steps towards acquainting all classes of public officials with the import of the Freedom of Information Act just as work has reached advanced stage to ensure the enactment of the law in the State...read more from Tundefashola


AWICH, 21 July 2011 (IRIN) - While other children head home after school, some pupils in Uganda's northern Amuru and Gulu regions stay behind to make sanitary pads using cheap, locally available materials, to ensure girls do not miss school during menstruation...read more from IRIN

Pakistan - Killing of infants rising - most are baby girls. - July 20, 2011

At a morgue in Pakistan's largest city, five linen pouches -- each the size of a loaf of bread -- line the shelf of a walk-in freezer. Wrapped inside each small sack is the corpse of an infant...read more from CNN

UPDATE: Iran: Women’s sports photographer, Maryam Majd, released on bail

Maryam Majd, a women’s sports photographer, arrested on her way to film the Women’s Soccer World Cup in Germany, has been released on bail, of 100,000 US Dollars, because of poor health. Maryam Majd disappeared on her way from Tehran, Iran, to Dusseldorf in Germany on the 17th of June 2011. She was held in Tehran's notorious Evin prison, in ward 2A, controlled by the Revolutionary Guards. Ms Majd was expected in Germany for two months during the Women's Soccer World Cup 2011, in order to produce a photographic record of the different soccer teams..read more from WLUML

Seeking Executive Director, BAOBAB For Women's Human Rights

The executive director will provide effective leadership through formulating and ensuring execution of BAOBAB's national and global programmes within the strategic guidelines formulated by the BAOBAB Board of Directors. This will be done through working with National Outreach Teams, allies and other civil society organisations with the goal of ensuring that women's human rights are concretised in the everyday lives of women, whether under secular, religious or customary laws and rights regimes. The post holder reports to BOABAB's Board of Directors. To apply click here

Kaduna evacuates students from Maiduguri - July 14, 2011

Due to the security challenges currently being witnessed in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, and the subsequent closure of the University of Maiduguri, which has led to some difficulties in transportation, Kaduna State governor, Patrick Yakowa, has dispatched 15 buses to Borno State for the immediate conveyance of all Kaduna State students back home...read more from 234NEXT

Afghan women rally, turning men red-faced with anger - July 14, 2011

KABUL – In any other country, the sight of a group of women holding colorful placards, marching and protesting is commonplace. But not in Afghanistan. In fact, a women’s protest on the streets of Kabul on Thursday was the first of its kind...read more from NBC

The Struggle for Women to Own Land

NAIROBI, Jul 14, 2011 (IPS) - Even at the best of times, obtaining a title deed from the ministry of lands is a difficult process. But as the minister of lands admitted on Jul. 13 that his office is rife with corruption, the disorganisation of this office means Kenyan women are no closer to owning land...read more from IPS

Law on Domestic Violence a Step Forward for Women’s Rights

JOHANNESBURG, Jul 13, 2011 (IPS) - Domestically abused women who are financially dependent on their abusers can now report the crime with the assurance that they will be able to get financial and medical support from the state, thanks to the country’s new law on domestic violence...read more from IPS

Brutalized Wife Of The Deposed Deji Of Akure Dies - July 12, 2011

Olori Bolanle Adepoju Adesina, the brutalized second wife of the deposed Deji of Akure, Oluwadare Adesina Adepoju, has died. Mrs. Adesina was the victim in a brutal domestic violence episode that shook the Nigerian nation and led to the Ondo state government to depose the Akure king...read more from Sahara

Related articles: Deji of Akure dethroned and banished from town for at least six months.

Deji of Akure Brutalizes Wife

Honor Killings: The Scourge of Turkey

Honor killings refer to the murder of people (primarily women) who have supposedly committed some act deemed to be a violation of honor.
Such acts may include marrying someone regarded as “unsuitable,” sex before marriage, demanding a divorce, a woman (married or unmarried) being raped, or even things as mundane and innocent as calling a radio station to ask for a song to be played on air, a girl seen talking to a boy...read more from ibtimes

Prevention is Key to Ending Violence Against Women

5 July 2011 - Prevention of violence against women was the focus of a discussion on women’s human rights held last month at the UN in Geneva in the framework of the 17th session of the UN Human Rights Council.

“In the struggle to eradicate violence against women, we should all task ourselves to be leading voices and engines of action,” said UN Human Rights chief Navi Pillay..read more from OHCHR

Editorial: Caution vital over gender pay reforms - July 11, 2011

In a wide range of jobs, the pay gap between men and women has proved stubbornly difficult to bridge. Now, the Human Rights Commission has decided it is time for a new approach. It has formulated a draft Pay Equality Bill that would remove confidentiality from what men and women earn in the workplace...read more from nzherald

Human rights hero coming to valley - July 10, 2011

EDWARDS, Colorado — In Kenya, women just want to be safe.

Rebecca Lolosoli had had enough with Kenya's rape epidemic and forced marriages, the beatings, the degradation — and for no reason other than being born female...read more from Vaildaily

Gilani for political, economic empowerment of women - July 10, 2011

LAHORE, July 10 (APP): Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani has said that the government is focused on political and economic empowerment of women for harnessing a viable role for women in society.“The empowerment of women will establish their social status and bring about a change to facilitate the process of development in the country”...read more from APP

Akolade Arowolo Used 2 Knives & a Hammer To Kill Banker Wife Titilayo - July 4, 2011

Akolade Arowolo, the man, who allegedly stabbed his 29-year-old banker wife, Titilayo, to death on June 24, 2011, may have used two knives and a hammer to carry out the dastardly act...read more from naijan

Nigerians Restore Future to Mutilated Five Year-Old Girl - July 3, 2011

Nigerians have contributed N1.8 million into the relief account for a five-year old girl who survived a brutal attack from ritual assailant and is currently hospitalised at the children's surgery ward of the Yola Specialist Hospital, Pwashikai Nideno. Half a million naira of that donation came from a Lagos-based philanthropist, who responded anonymously to the girl's plight after a NEXT publication reported that half a million naira was needed for the operation to reconstruct her damaged vagina and rectum at a Nigerian hospital...read more from 234NEXT

Italian Company Fires Women “So They Can Stay At Home” - July 1, 2011

An Italian engineering firm is dealing with a downturn in sales in a way that is creative, albeit totally inappropriate. Faced with the need to downsize, the family-owned company, which manufactures electric fans and blowers for air conditioning and heating equipment, decided to fire 13 of its female employees, leaving a staff of 12 men and 5 women. The only people who were fired were women between the ages of 30 and 40. The company, with disturbing honesty, explained its decision thusly:

“We are firing the women so they can stay at home and look after the children. In any case, what they bring in is a second income"...read more from Care2

Court Remands Alleged Traditional Ruler Rapist - July 1, 2011

The traditional ruler of Ilowa in Obokun Local Government Area of Osun State, Adebukola Alli, who is standing trial before an Osogbo Chief Magistrate Court for allegedly raping a 23-year-old member of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), Helen Okpara was Friday remanded in prison custody...read more from 234NEXT

UN Secretary-General Calls for Specific Steps to Close Gender Gap in National Parliaments

30 June 2011 – The UN Secretary-General told a high-level forum on women and democracy, held in the Lithuanian capital, Vilnius, that it was time for “faster and wider progress” in promoting the participation of women at all levels of society...read more from UN News

Women Should Get Paid Less Because They Menstruate – CEO - June 29, 2011

There are many differences between the sexes. For millenia — and even today — women have been treated as lesser members of society, lesser contributors, lesser workers than men. Unfairly. It has been a long, difficult and painful road towards equality and equity, and the battle is still fought daily. And just when you think you’ve made some gains, someone will open his mouth and make you realize just how far there still is left to go...read more from Care2

Exiled and 24: The Young Woman Fighting for Bahrain - June 29, 2011

When Maryam al-Khawaja and I first met in March, in a dingy hospital hallway in Manama, Bahrain's regime had just tear gassed hundreds of its staunchest detractors, shooting them with rubber bullets and live ammunition while they slept and prayed. The dead and wounded were brought to Salmaniya medical center, where their loved ones were met by an energetic girl in jeans and a head scarf, hopping from floor to floor directing foot traffic, doling out information to worried families, and escorting aid workers...read more from The Alantic

Rwanda: Project to Protect Women Rights Launched - June 27, 2011

Nyarugenge — UN Women together with the City of Kigali launched a project aimed at promoting the rights of working women and girls...read more from Allafrica

Egypt - Military Pledges to Stop Forced "Virginity Tests" - June 27, 2011

The head of Egypt’s military intelligence has promised Amnesty International that the army will no longer carry out forced ‘virginity tests’ after defending their use, during a meeting with the organisation in Cairo on Sunday...read more from Amnesty

Guatemala Introduces Women-Only Buses - June 27, 2011

In an attempt to protect women from sexual harassment, IPS is reporting that Guatemala City’s transit system launched a women’s only bus pilot project a couple of weeks ago. There are now dozens of women-only buses running during peak hours (6:00 to 7:30 am and 5:30 to 7:00 pm). Other than drivers, the only males allowed on the buses are boys under the age of twelve. The pilot was introduced due to the large number of complaints about men groping and rubbing up against women and girls on buses...read more from Care2

Liberia Tackles Sexual Violence - June 27, 2011

Rape continues to be the most frequently reported serious crime in Liberia. A new multipronged approach is underway to reduce sexual and gender-based violence...read more from WeNews

Empowering women helps fight poverty and other social ills, UN official stresses - June 27, 2011

Empowering women and advancing their rights is not only the right thing to do but it can lead to progress on a range of issues, including the fight against poverty, hunger and violence, the head of the United Nations agency tasked with promoting women’s rights said today...read more from UN news

Afghanistan - 8-Year-Old Girl "Used in Attack" - June 26, 2011

26 June 2011 - An eight-year-old girl has been killed after insurgents used her in a bomb attack on police in southern Afghanistan, the government has said...read more from BBC

Africa Regional Young Women’s Leadership Institute Underway - June 21, 2011

An Africa Regional Young Women’s Leadership Institute (YWLI) yesterday, began in Accra with a call for a vibrant young women’s movement to fight gender stereotypes and empower women to reach their full potential in both private and public life...read more from Ghana Government Official Portal

China: Children Poisoned by Lead and Denied Treatment
Officials Prevent Access to Care, Intimidate and Detain Parents - June 15, 2011

New York Times: Lead Poisoning in China -- The Hidden Scourge

Huffington Post: China Lead Poisoning Epidemic Being Covered Up,

Human Rights Watch Report Alleges

Guardian UK: Chinese children at risk of lead poisoning 'blocked from treatment'

Children with dangerously high levels of lead in their blood are being refused treatment and returned home to contaminated houses in polluted villages. Parents, journalists, and community activists who dare to speak out about lead are detained, harassed, and ultimately silenced....read more from HRW

ANALYSIS: Poll highlights hidden but deadly dangers for women - June 15, 2011

LONDON (TrustLaw) - From gang rape and honour killings to domestic abuse and acid attacks, millions of women suffer horrific violence every day, but nowhere more so than in the five countries a Thomson Reuters Foundation poll identifies as the most dangerous places to be born female...read more from TrustLaw

Five UN Agencies Want ‘Son Preferencing’ to Stop - June 15, 2011

In some communities, when a couple does not produce a male heir, often it is the wife that must bear the consequences. Those consequences can be violence, abandonment, divorce, or even death. Some women must continue bearing children until they give birth to a son...read more

Human rights victory for rapists and paedophiles - June 14, 2011

Thousands of sex offenders, including rapists and paedophiles, will be able to apply to be removed from the sex crimes register under human rights laws, the Government has announced...read more from telegraph

ICC: Evidence shows that Gaddafi ordered rape of hundreds - June 12, 2011

The International Criminal Court's chief prosecutor says there is evidence that Libyan leader Col. Muammar Gaddafi ordered the rape of hundreds of women to spread fear of his regime and curb dissent...read more from tehrantimes

Women in politics - June 12, 2011

The fortunes of Nigerian women in politics continue to be mixed. On Friday, four days after the bid by Mulikat Akande (Ogbomosho North Federal Constituency) to become Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives failed, another female Oyo State lawmaker was elected as the Speaker of a State House of Assembly. Monsurat Jumoke Sunmonu has thus gone into the history books as the first woman to occupy the position of Speaker in Oyo State...read more from 234NEXT

California Computer Technician Trevor Harwell Suspected of Spying on Women - June 10, 2011

Fullerton, Calif., police have arrested a computer technician suspected of using spyware to coax women into the showers with their computers so he could take naked photographs of them via web cameras...read more from ABC

UN official stresses need for empowerment and political participation of women - June 10, 2011

The head of the United Nation entity tasked with promoting gender equality today reiterated that economic empowerment of women, political participation, ending gender-based violence and raising women’s involvement in post-conflict peacebuilding are the priorities of the body...read more from UN

Curb Violence Against Women, Girls While Preventing AIDS, Says UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund- June 9, 2011

UNITED NATIONS, N.Y., June 9, 2011 — /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Stronger action must be taken to change harmful gender norms and practices and to integrate the prevention of gender-based violence into anti-HIV efforts, said Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, Executive Director of UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund...read more from centredaily

Bill limiting sharia law is motivated by 'concern for Muslim women' - June 8, 2011

Islamic courts would be forced to acknowledge the primacy of English law under a bill being introduced in the House of Lords.

The bill, proposed by Lady Cox and backed by women's rights groups and the National Secular Society, was drawn up because of "deep concerns" that Muslim women are suffering discrimination within closed sharia law councils...read more from guardian.

Analysis: New laws have little impact on sexual violence in DRC

BUKAVU, 7 June 2011 (IRIN) - Five years after the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) revised its laws against sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV), these crimes continue to go unpunished because of judicial inaction and a legal culture at odds with the changes. The laws, ignored and misinterpreted, have left escalating numbers of sexual violence survivors unprotected, and perpetrators free to violate again...read more from IRIN

Ethiopian girls fight child marriages - June 7, 2011

"I wanted to get an education but my parents were determined to marry me off," says Himanot Yehewala, an Ethiopian girl who was married five years ago at the age of 13.
"I tried to run away but my mother said she would kill herself if I did not marry him." ...read more from BBC

Nigeria: Teenage girls form anti-rape vanguard in Sokoto - June 2, 2011

A group of adolescent girls, aged between 10 and 15 years, in Sokoto State have formed an Anti-Rape Vanguard.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the girls have also organised a sensitisation meeting on sexual abuse and HIV/AIDS at Tangaza Local Government after a peer education training...read more from PUNCH

KENYA: Legislation failing to curb FGM/C - June 2, 2011

NYAMATARO, 2 June 2011 (IRIN) - At her grandmother's home in the western Kenyan village of Nyamataro, 14-year-old Ruth* lies on a mat surrounded by visitors, all congratulating her on becoming a woman; the previous week, Ruth was one of 10 girls to undergo female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C)...read more from IRIN

Marriage quashes education hopes of South Sudan's girls - June 1, 2011

JUBA (AlertNet) - It took years of pleading before Jane Aketch persuaded her parents to send her to primary school in the dusty bush of South Sudan's Eastern Equatoria state.

Although her parents wanted her to learn how to read and write, like most of the communities in Aketch's home county of Magwi, they did not place particular importance in furthering a girl's education..read more from Trust

Gender equality a benchmark for good governance - June 1, 2011

With the increase in the number of women ministers coupled with the appointment of a woman to the office of Speaker and another as the chief executive officer for the city, the gender debate is back...read more from newvision

Women's rights and the internet at the Human Rights Council - May 31, 2011

For the first time, the role of the internet on the right to freedom of opinion and expression is being reported at the 17th session of the UN Human Rightsi Council. This signals a clear recognition that the increasing prevalence of the internet in all aspect of our lives is becoming impossible to ignore, and that it is becoming pivotal in the realisation of our fundamental rights and freedoms...read more from genderIT


MIGORI/NAIROBI, 30 May 2011 (IRIN) - Since discovering that her 13-year-old daughter was pregnant about a month ago, Juanita* has paid several visits to the local chief in her village in western Kenya, seeking justice for her daughter and punishment for the man who abused her...read more from IRIN

Lagos House Passes Tenancy Bill - May 26, 2011

Lagos State House Assembly, yesterday, passed the Tenancy Bill into law, after the third reading and sent it to the Governor Babatunde Fashola for assent.

The bill is tagged: A bill for a law to regulate rights and obligations under tenancy agreement and the relationship between landlord and the tenant including the procedure for the recovery of premises and for other connected purposes in Lagos State...read more from Vanguardng


Government officials say teacher had ignored death threats from hardline Islamists warning him not to teach girls...read more from Guardian

Review of Women's Participation and Performance at the 2011 General Election in Nigeria

The marginalization of Nigerian women in politics and decision making is as old as the Nigerian society and actually predates the advent of colonialism in Southern and Northern Nigeria. It is widely believed that the marginalization of women in political participation and decision making processes has been responsible for the exclusion of the interests of women in governance and development paradigms...click here to read the full article

The president's promise on female appointees - May 26, 2011

By next week, Goodluck Jonathan would have assumed a fresh presidency that is completely his, and one of his first jobs would be to pick the men and women that will work with him to actualise the programmes of his administration...read more from 234next

State security forces to undergo mandatory gender , dev’t, human rights training - May 26, 2011

BUTUAN CITY, May 26 (PIA) – Military and police personnel will undergo mandatory training on gender and development, and human rights. The module entitled “Comprehensive Pilot Intervention Plan against Gender Violence in Caraga (CoPIPAGV-13)” is aimed at upholding women’s welfare according to resource person Atty. Jose Fe Sorrera-Ty...read more from PIA

Randy cop rapes, impregnates 12-year old girl - May 25, 2011

Human rights advocates were on Monday thrown into confusion in Ado-Ekiti when a 70-year-old mother, Mrs. Juliana Olajiga walked into their chambers, The Community Law Centre, with a 12-year-old minor with protruding belly, shedding tears.
At first, the septuagenarian lost her voice, wondering where to start explaining her plight...read more from The Sun

Man gets death sentence for killing his wife - May 25, 2011

The ruling of Justice Habeeb Abiru on Monday was not an easy one, for him and for Tunde Akinola, the accused person...read more from 234next

India - As Wealth & Literacy Rise, So Do Sex-Selective Abortions - Study - May 24, 2011

NEW DELHI — India's increasing wealth and improving literacy are apparently contributing to a national crisis of “missing girls,” with the number of sex-selective abortions up sharply among more affluent, educated families during the past two decades, according to a new study...read more from nytimes

The politics of human rights in Ivory Coast - May 24, 2011

An Amnesty International report on Ivory Coast has said both sides in the country's recent political and military crisis committed war crimes...read more from BBC

Human Rights Watch calls for release of Saudi woman who defied driving ban May 24, 2011

CAIRO — International and local rights groups lashed out Tuesday at the arrest of a Saudi woman for defying the kingdom’s female driving ban, while other Saudi women posted video clips online showing themselves behind the wheel...read more from washintonpost

First Woman Speaker of Parliament Changing Politics

Rebecca Alitwala KadagaRebecca Alitwala Kadaga is the first female speaker of Uganda’s parliament.

KAMPALA, May 24, 2011 (IPS) - Very soon wives in Uganda will legally have the right to a share in their husband’s property, that’s if the country’s new speaker of parliament has her way...read more from IPS

Women groups in Edo demand sack of randy lawmaker - May 23, 2011

The Edo lawmaker (names withheld) who allegedly impregnated his sister-in-law, a minor, yesterday came under sharp condemnation, as more pressure groups joined their voices to the call for his prosecution...read more from 234next

A place where girls matter - May 20, 2011

Kenya GirlsIn Kenya's largest slum, the Kibera School for Girls is providing little girls with the chance of their lives—a refuge from abuse and hunger.

Dreams are a luxury few can afford in Kenya’s largest slum. That is, until you turn the corner, walk down a small alleyway and arrive at a bright pink and blue makeshift building. Little girls in bright red sweaters and bright blue skirts are running around, giggling and playing, indoors and out. And when you look at the mud on their shoes, or the tin houses that surround the school, you come to realize that 60 little girls are getting the chance of their lives and they know it. This is the Kibera School for Girls – a refuge from abuse and hunger...read more from msnbc

Women in front line as Sri Lanka tackles landmines

After the war, one of the few jobs available is clearing explosives.

THE women are taking back war-torn northern Sri Lanka, one square metre at a time.

In the aftermath of nearly three decades of brutal civil war, the men are dead, held by the army or have simply disappeared...read more from smh

School pregnancies: A call for reflection on teachers` morality - May 18, 2011

School girlsAccording the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training, during the period of five-years, between 2004 and 2008, a total of 28,590 schoolgirls in the country dropped out of school as a result of unwanted pregnancy, 11,599 being secondary school students and 16,991 primary schools...read more from ippmedia

Brutal Murder Stirs Palestinian Debate on Women's Rights - May 17, 2011

PA promises reforms after the ‘honor killing’ of Aaya Barad'iyya

A slain Palestinian woman, murdered by her uncle and three other men for disgracing the family, has evoked widespread public debate on the age-old practice of honor killings...read more from themedialine

Abbas signs amendment to honor killing law - May 16, 2011

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- President Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday signed an amendment to Palestinian law to end leniency for civilians found guilty of assault or murder "in defense of family honor." ...read more from Ma'an News

Helen Zille leads trio of women threatening ANC with Democratic Alliance election upset - May 14, 2011

trio_womenA trio of women headed by Helen Zille, leader of the Democratic Alliance, is aiming to oust the ruling ANC from three South African cities in elections on Wednesday...read more from the telegraph

Full Story about Bahraini Detained Women who Face Torture and Humiliation for Participating in Peaceful Protests - May 14, 2011

Dozens are detained in prison facing torture and humiliation for participating in peaceful protests. Bahrain regime is killing, detaining, physically and verbally abusing and dismissing women from work and education...read more from ABNA


Cyberstalking is a growing problem for women as rapid technological advances make online intrusion ever-more possible. There is a standard set of safety precautions, but as one safety advocate says, "This crime can be hard to stop."...read more from We.news

SRI LANKA-JAFFNA - Many Female-headed Post-war households

Sri Lanka-Women are often the new breadwinners in the family, setting up small businesses and helping to support or supplement family income...read more from the sundayleader

The Word on Women - Rural women and agricultural land conversions in China

China’s unprecedented economic growth and rapid urbanization have created a massive demand for arable land to be converted to real estate or industrial development. In parallel, local government officials and Village Collective cadres typically favor conversions because local public expenditures tend to greatly surpass local taxes and land use fees have become an important source of fiscal revenue...read more from TRUST

Bangladesh - Acid Attack Survivor Helps Heal Other Victims - May 3, 2011

A survivor of an acid attack recalls the slow, painful stages of recovery it took to turn her into a counselor for others. Acid attacks are punishable by death now in Bangladesh, but new victims continue needing her help...read more from womensenews

East Asia May Get its First Woman President - May 3, 2011

TAIPEI, May 3, 2011 (IPS) - Taiwan may become the first country in East Asia with a female head of state if opposition Democratic Progressive Party Chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen wins the island country’s fifth presidential election next Jan. 14...read more from IPS

Girl Who Refuses to Cheer for Her Rapist Loses Supreme Court Appeal - May 3, 2011

The Texas cheerleader who was raped by a star high school athlete and subsequently kicked off her squad after refusing to cheer for her rapist, has lost her Supreme Court appeal, Jezebel is reporting. A lower court ruled “that the cheerleader was speaking for the school, not herself, and had no right to remain silent when called on to cheer the athlete by name.” The Court declined to hear her case and had no further comment....read more from thefastertimes

Germany: Groundbreaking Trial for Congo War Crimes Protect Witnesses, Communicate Progress to Congolese Victims - May 2, 2011

(Brussels) - The trial of two Rwandan rebel leaders arrested in Germany for alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity in the Democratic Republic of Congo makes the world a smaller place for suspected war criminals, Human Rights Watch said today...read more from HRW

True Survivor - May 1, 2011

In 2002 Mukhtar Mai was gang-raped at the orders of a local Pakistani jirga in retaliation for a minor offense by her brother (he loved a girl from a different social class). On April 21 the country’s Supreme Court released five of the six alleged rapists...read more from Newsweek

To the FBI, Lara Logan Wasn’t Raped - May 1, 2011

Less than three months ago, CBS News correspondent Lara Logan was brutally gang-raped in Cairo’s Tahrir Square. She was covering the Egyptian uprising on Feb. 11 when a group of 200 to 300 men suddenly snatched her away from her team. Then, “For an extended period of time, they raped me with their hands,” she says...read more from msmagazine

Child Soldiers Return to Congolese Wars - April 28, 2011

Since 2003, tens of thousands of children have been removed from warring militias in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Boys and girls return from the bush traumatized, isolated, uneducated and too old to go back to school. United Nations statistics say thousands of armed children are still held by militias. And, many of those that escape, are abducted again by their commanders, or rejoin by choice...read more from VOA

Health Workers Without Maternity Leave

KARACHI, Apr 28, 2011 (IPS) - Shazia Kiran is seven months pregnant with her third child and worried she might be unable to juggle her work and the responsibilities of caring for a newborn. But what worries her more is that she has no maternity benefits, and she has not received her salary as a Lady Health Worker (LHW) for the last three months...read more from IPS

Corruption In Kenya Drives Rise In Girl-child Trafficking - April 28, 2011

(Nairobi): For almost three years, 39 year old, Jane Ngoyoini, has not seen or heard from her daughter. In 2007, 15 year old, Frieda Ngoyoini, completely vanished during a school girl-scout jamboree program near Chelmsford, Essex, Ireland...read more from AWID

Sexism in the System in Syria - April 27, 2011

Some laws that are prejudicial towards women were amended this year. But gender inequality remains entrenched in Syria’s criminal code...read more from rojwomen

AFGHANISTAN: Virginity-related penalties “extremely unfair”

KABUL, 26 April 2011 (IRIN) - The penalties that Afghan women suffer whenever allegations of pre-marital sex and loss of virginity emerge, including death, are extreme, discriminatory and not in the penal code, activists said...read more from IRIN

Katya's story: trafficked to the UK, sent home to torture

The experience of one woman, enslaved by traffickers and and shuttled across Europe to serve the sex trade, highlights the need for urgent reform of the law...read more from Guardian

Memories of my circumcision have haunted me to date

File | NATION Nominated Member of Parliament Sophia Abdi Noor was barely eight years old when her mother ‘blessed’ her to undergo the rite of passage that would cleanse her and make her acceptable for marriage according to tradition. The ordeal she underwent and the consequences made her launch a campaign against the female cut...read more from Nation

Indonesia: Press China to Sign ‘Disappearances’ Treaty - April 27, 2011

(New York) - President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono of Indonesia should urge Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao to sign the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, Human Rights Watch said today. Wen is scheduled to visit to Jakarta between April 27 and 30, 2011...read more from HRW

Burundi: Displaced Women in Bujumbura Risk HIV Rather Than Hunger - April 26, 2011

Bujumbura — Desperate and displaced, some Burundian women will do anything, including have unprotected sex for money, to escape the dreadful living conditions in the Bujumbura suburb of Sabe, where more than 480 families of internally displaced persons (IDPs) have lived for several years..read more from allAfrica

Secretary-General speaks out against killings of peaceful protesters in Syria

26 April 2011 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today expressed “increasingly grave concern” about the situation inside Syria, where hundreds of peaceful demonstrators protesting against the Government have been killed or injured in recent days.26 April 2011 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today expressed “increasingly grave concern” about the situation inside Syria, where hundreds of peaceful demonstrators protesting against the Government have been killed or injured in recent days...read more from UNnews

More Working Women Hold College Degrees than Men - April 26, 2011

The gap between employed women and men with college degrees has widened, according to data from the Census Bureau today. Thirty-seven percent of employed women have a bachelor's degree or higher, compared to 35 percent of men, according to 2010 census figures...read more from abcnews

At least 105 dead in clashes in Southern Sudan - April 24, 2011

JUBA, Sudan – At least 105 people have died in violence between government forces and rebel militias in Southern Sudan this week, an official said Sunday, raising concerns of southern instability ahead of the region's independence declaration in July...read more from Yahoonews

Group: At least 500 dead in Nigeria election riots - April 24, 2011

BAUCHI, Nigeria – At least 500 people died in religious rioting that followed Nigeria's presidential election, a civil rights group said Sunday, as volatile state gubernatorial elections loom this week...read more from Yahoonews

Liberia: Protect Refugees Against Sexual Abuse - April 21, 2011

Geneva) - Dozens of Ivorian refugee women and girls recently arrived in eastern Liberia say they have had to engage in sex to get adequate food, shelter, or money, Human Rights Watch said today...read more from Awid

Egypt’s Buthayna Kamel Makes History As The First Woman To Run For President - April 21, 2011

For the first time in the history of Egypt, a woman is running for president.

Buthayna Kamel, a 49-year-old talk show host, has announced her candidacy for the presidential election that will be held later this year. This monumental step would not have been possible had it not been for the youth uprising that ousted former President Hosni Mubarak. In the past, only candidates who were approved by Mubarak and rubber-stamped by his Parliament could run...read more from Awid

Kenyan Women Pulling Together Against Poverty

KIAMBU DISTRICT, Kenya, Apr 13 (IPS) - When it works, it's spectacular: Esther Ngonyo Njuguna's dairy project stands as testimony to the potential of microcredit schemes to boost rural incomes...read more from IPS

Top PEN prize to honor Nasrin Sotoudeh - April 16, 2011

(PEN American Center/IFEX) - New York City, April 13, 2011 –
PEN American Center today named Nasrin Sotoudeh, a writer, lawyer, and leader of the women's and children's rights movement in Iran, as the recipient of its 2011 PEN/Barbara Goldsmith Freedom to Write Award. Sotoudeh was arrested on September 4, 2010, and is now serving an 11-year sentence for her outspoken advocacy in defense of her clients arrested after the June 2009 presidential elections and interviews she gave to human rights organizations and media about their cases...read more from scoop

Haitian Trafficking Victims Discovered in Ecuador - April 14, 2011

QUITO, Apr 14, 2011 (IPS) - The four young Haitians told legal authorities that they were offered complete scholarships to the university, but that once they reached Ecuador they were locked up in a house and made to pay 150 dollars a month for rent and board, while given the run around about the promised education...read more from IPS

Hillary Clinton urges strong role for women in Arab world - April 13, 2011

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Arab leaders to move “faster and further” in reform in a speech Tuesday at the U.S.-Islam World Forum Tuesday, rousing audience members as she pushed leaders to give citizens a bigger role in regime change in the Middle East and North Africa...read more from dailycaller

Syria releases 100 detainees after wives' protest - April 13, 2011

Damascus/Beirut - Syria on Wednesday released around 100 men detained in al Baida after wives and children staged a sit-in on a main highway in the north-east of the country...read more from monstersandcritics

A reversal of shame in Libya - April 10, 2011

Plenty of women have risked their lives alongside men, protesting for freedom across the Middle East. Yet few would have done what Iman al-Obeidi did...read more from blog

India counts its missing daughters as illegal abortions continue - April 8, 2011

KUREKSHETRA (TrustLaw) - Beneath the seeming religiosity of this quaint north Indian town, revered in Hindu scriptures, lies a sinister reputation: It has one of India's lowest populations of girls as illegal abortions flourish in a region with a strong preference for boys...read more from Trust

Women’s Land & Property Rights

In many countries around the world, women’s property rights are limited by social norms, customs and at times legislation, hampering their economic status and opportunities to overcome poverty. Even in countries where women constitute the majority of small farmers and do more than 75 percent of the agricultural work, they are routinely denied the right to own the land they cultivate and on which they are dependent to raise their families...read more from UNIFEM


DHAKA, 6 April 2011 (IRIN) - Despite various government and non-governmental initiatives to stem child marriage in Bangladesh , parents are continuing to marry off their underage daughters, health experts say...read more from Irinnews

UN secretary-general says revolutions in Middle East, North Africa must respect women's right - April 5, 2011

PHILADELPHIA — One of the most significant aspects of revolutions in the Middle East and Africa is that women are participating, and the movements must respect women's fundamental rights in order to succeed, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Monday...read more from Google

Women ski jumpers won't celebrate until IOC officially allows them at Games - April 4, 2011

VANCOUVER - Women ski jumpers reacted with cautious optimism to news the International Olympic Committee is poised to include their sport at next Winter Games.

"I'm thrilled to hear that,'' Katie Willis said Monday. "I am just trying not to get my hopes up too much because we have been in this situation a few times before.'..read more from winnipeg

California prison reform should start with women - April 4, 2011

If we want to fix California's broken criminal justice system, let's start by changing our approach to incarcerating and rehabilitating women. That is one of the key proposals offered in March by a panel of law enforcement and social justice leaders on California Attorney General Kamala Harris' transition team. Here's why:...read more from sfgate

Katsina election officials and police accept underage voters - April 4, 2011

While the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Attahiru Jega, was announcing the cancellation of the 2011 National Assembly elections for unavailability of materials, former head of state and presidential candidate of the CPC, Mohammed Buhari, was casting his vote at his home town in Daura, Katsina State...read more from 234NEXT


KRAING KAOK, Cambodia, Apr 2, 2011 (IPS) - Death haunts women in this Cambodian village at a moment of happiness - when they give birth.

"Today, nothing frightens Cambodian women more than having to give birth," says Mu Sochuea, former minister of women’s affairs. "It is costly, risky and not safe for the mothers and the babies."...read more from IPS

Charity: More than 1,000 killed in Ivorian town - April 2, 2011

Unknown attackers wielding machetes and guns killed more than 1,000 civilians in the neighborhood of an Ivory Coast town controlled by forces fighting to install the internationally recognized president, the Catholic charity Caritas told The Associated Press Saturday....read more from uruknet

Brazil - Women Workers Train with Heavy Equipment for Skills & Higher Wages - March 28, 2011

GUARIBA, Brazil, Mar 28, 2011 (IPS) - "She's crazy" said most of the husbands and other family members of the 34 women who decided to become operators of sugarcane harvesters in the southern Brazilian state of São Paulo, attracted by the opportunity of better pay and encouraged by the growing mechanisation of the industry...read more from IPS

Uwa’s Story


In Nigeria, a woman’s place is thought to be in the home. But I had other plans. I was determined to pursue a higher education and obtain economic independence, so I attended college, obtained multiple degrees, and worked hard to have a very successful career in banking and finance in the top banks in the capitol, Lagos...read more from tahirih

Women in India: The long road from purdah to power

The first time Mumal Barupal went to a meeting of her village council, she sat on the floor, off to the side of the benches occupied by the other members, in purdah – her face completely veiled by the end of her sari...read more The Globe

Cote d'Ivoire: Up to 1 Million People Driven from Homes by Violence - UN

25 March 2011 – As many as 1 million people have been driven from their homes in Côte d’Ivoire in the months-long turmoil stemming from the outgoing president’s refusal to leave office, with violence mounting and his loyalists using heavy weapons against civilians, a top United Nations official said today...read more from UN News Centre

Call for mass protests in Syria as human rights group claims 40 have been killed by government forces - March 24, 2011

The main hospital in the southern Syrian city of Deraa received the bodies of at least 25 protesters killed in the latest confrontation with security forces, a hospital official said today...read more from Mail online

Lebanon Protesters Take Aim at Family Law System - March 24, 2011

BEIRUT, Lebanon (WOMENSENEWS)--The demonstrations held here on March 20 marked the third time in four weeks that protesters gathered to demand an end to the "confessional" or sectarian system that divides Lebanon's government and society along religious lines...read more from WOMENSENEWS

New Egyptian law criminalizes protests - March 23, 2011

The Egyptian Cabinet on Wednesday ordered a law criminalizing protests and strikes. Under the new law, anyone organizing or calling for a protest will be sentenced to jail and/or a fine of LE500,000...read more from almasryalyoum

Egyptian women protesters forced to take ‘virginity tests’ - March 23, 2011

Amnesty International has today called on the Egyptian authorities to investigate serious allegations of torture, including forced ‘virginity tests’, inflicted by the army on women protesters arrested in Tahrir Square earlier this month...read more from Amnesty

Their empty talk of liberating Afghan women March 23, 2011

IT SEEMS like a ludicrous claim now, but when the U.S. invaded Afghanistan nearly 10 years ago in the "war on terror," one of the most potent justifications was to liberate Afghan women...read more from socialistworker

President of the Seychells Appoints Mathilda Twomey as the First Female Judge - March 22, 2011

The Seychelles President James Michel has approved the appointment of Mrs. Mathilda Twomey as a Justice of the Court of Appeal, following the recommendation of the Constitutional Appointments Authority. The President stated in the official press release that “Mathilda Twomey will become the first female judge in the history of Seychelles. I congratulate Mrs Twomey on her achievement, and wish her well in her new post. I hope that other young women will look to her for inspiration for a career in the judiciary in the future. Her appointment is timely as we have recently celebrated one hundred years of Women’s Day; it is another victory for Seychelles”...read more from Human rights

Morocco: Thousands Demonstrate Peacefully - March 21, 2011

(Rabat) - Moroccan authorities allowed peaceful, pro-reform demonstrations to take place in cities across the country on March 20, 2011, Human Rights Watch said today. The police restraint contrasted with their violent dispersal of demonstrators the previous Sunday in Casablanca...read more from HRW

Gaza: Stop Suppressing Peaceful Protests - March 19, 2011

(Jerusalem) - Hamas authorities in Gaza should punish those responsible for attacks on peaceful demonstrators calling for Palestinian political reconciliation, Human Rights Watch said today...read more from HRW

Afghanistan Air Force Now Includes Women

The Afghan Air Force can now count on Afghan women to help defend their country alongside their male compatriots, a significant milestone and an inspiration to women, considering how women’s rights in Afghanistan were so brutally restricted under Taliban rule just ten years ago...read more from Nato

Social networking sparks dramatic changes - March 15, 2011

For more than 30 years, the subject of political reform in most of the Middle East was largely a part of covert debates. In little more than 30 days, however, it has forcibly entered the realm of the overt...read more from khaleejtimes

HIV/AIDS: Five ways to reduce women's vulnerability to HIV

NAIROBI, 8 March 2011 (PlusNews) - As the world celebrates the 100th anniversary of International Women's Day, women and girls across the globe continue to be disproportionately affected by the AIDS pandemic - HIV is the leading cause of death and disease among women of reproductive age worldwide...read more from Plusnews

Russia: Chechnya Enforcing Islamic Dress Code - March 10, 2011

2011_Chechnya_FemaleStudentWomen Attacked, Intimidated as Moscow Officials Look the Other Way

(Moscow) - Chechen authorities are enforcing a compulsory Islamic dress code for women and condoning violent attacks on women deemed to dress immodestly, Human Rights Watch said in a report issued today. Russia's federal government has done almost nothing to respond to these violations of women's rights in Chechnya...read more from HRW

Only Half a Revolution? - March 9, 2011

Egyptian women were out in Tahrir sq and on streets throughout the country fighting for the revolution, so how could they be excluded from an equal share in post revolution political and social arrangements?...read more from ahram

Nigeria: Local Women and 100yrs of IWD - March 9, 2011

Mrs. Agnes Fidelis is a widow in Minna, the Niger State capital, with eight children, all girls. Her husband was a truck driver who died in an auto crash some years back, thus leaving her to bring up the children all by herself. And this she has to do with the little she makes from her petty trading...read more from Allafrica

10 women leaders, activists hailed for advancing rights - March 9, 2011

WASHINGTON -- First lady Michelle Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton presented awards Tuesday to 10 women leaders and activists from around the world who have advanced the cause of human rights in their countries read more from post-gazette

Zimbabwean Police Break Up Intn'l Women's Day Observances in Bulawayo - March 8, 2011

Police briefly detained 16 members of the local chapter of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions after they marched to observe Women’s Day, though the union said a court had authorized the demonstration... read more from voanews

Morocco: Physical assault of human rights defender Ms Buthaina Amina Elmakoudi - March 3, 2011

On 26 February 2011, human rights defender Ms Buthaina Amina Elmakoudi was physically assaulted while taking part in a peaceful protest in Agadir, Morocco. Buthaina Amina Elmakoudi is the director of the Agadir section of the Association against AIDS, and has also worked with the Democratic League of Women's Rights, Moroccan Association for Human Rights, and the Moroccan Forum for Truth and Justice...read more from Frontline

Ivory Coast forces kill at least six women protesters - March 3, 2011

While the world is transfixed on the popular revolts in the Middle East, Ivory Coast's descent toward civil war has slid below the radar.

Here, an African strongman clings to power and his forces have killed hundreds. Desperate inhabitants have turned to a new tactic in Abidjan: strength in weakness. Daily women’s marches have been held in neighbourhoods across the city, with slogans that don't support either man claiming to be president. The women simply called for the killing to stop...read more from THe Globe

UNICEF steps up efforts to vaccinate displaced women and children in Côte D'Ivoire

TIÉBISSOU, Côte d’Ivoire, 3 March 2011 – Since last November’s disputed presidential election, the political crisis in Côte d’Ivoire has deepened into an emergency...read more from UNICEF

Minorities minister Shahbaz Bhatti assassinated in Islamabad - March 3, 2011

ISLAMABAD: Gunmen shot and killed Pakistan’s government minister for religious minorities on Wednesday, the latest attack on a high-profile Pakistani figure who had urged reforming harsh blasphemy laws that impose the death penalty for insulting Islam...read more from DAWN

Girls lured into Philippine cybersex industry - March 3, 2011

Kim and Maricel were forced to work as cybersex chat girls in the city of Olongapo
Maricel is a shy, attractive girl, who looks younger than her 15 years. But in her short life, she has already had to deal with experiences that would badly scar many adults...read more from BBC

Celebrate Solutions: Driven to Deliver Maternal Care to Bolivia’s Hardest-to-Reach Women

Nearly a decade after being launched, a program that sends mobile health units down some of Bolivia ’s most remote roads is continuing to deliver much-needed basic reproductive and maternal health care to thousands of indigenous girls and women. Because most indigenous girls and women are unable to travel to cities to receive the reproductive care they need, the International Planned Parenthood Federation—Western Hemisphere and Bolivia-based Center for Investigative and Educational Services’ (CIES) Sexual and Reproductive Health Clinic use these mobile health units to bring maternal health care to women who are the hardest to reach...read more from Womendeliver

Women Commit Suicide to Escape Sexual Harassment in Bangladesh

Sexual harassment against women in Bangladesh is turning deadly. According to local human rights groups 28 women committed suicide this year to escape frequent sexual harassment...read more from Asiacalling

China mulls delaying women's retirement age - March 1, 2011

The Chinese labour authority is trying to delay the retirement age for women, according to a top official report...read more from Sify

Confronting gender apartheid in 21st century - March 1, 2011

A Libyan womenA Libyan-American woman gestures while holding a placard during a protest against Muammar Gaddafi, at the residence of the Libyan ambassador, in Washington February 25, 2011. The United States said on Friday it was imposing sanctions and cutting diplomatic ties with Libya as Gaddafi's security forces stepped up efforts to crush a widening revolt against his rule.

BLOG - Humanity continues to witness human rights violations in the discrimination and violence against half of the world's population, writes Babatunde Osotimehin, executive director of the United Nations Population Fund and under-secretary-general of the United Nations. ..read more from Reuters

Armed conflict blocking efforts to achieve universal primary schooling, UN warns

Primary School1 March 2011 – Armed conflict is robbing 28 million children of an education by exposing them to widespread rape and other sexual violence, targeted attacks on schools and other human rights abuses, according to a United Nations report issued today...read more from UN News Centre

Reps pass FOI Bill - February 24, 2011

LAGOS – THE House of Representatives, Thursday , responded to yearnings of the populace to have accountability in our public life as it passed the Freedom of Information Bill, 11 years after it was first introduced in the National Assembly...read more from Vanguard

Security for All: West Africa’s Good Practices on Gender in the Security Sector

Despite ongoing efforts to improve the accountability and effectiveness of the security sector in West Africa, the different security and justice needs of men, women, boys and girls are often marginalised and women remain largely excluded from security and defence decision-making processes. Nevertheless, there are examples of innovative initiatives taken across West Africa to integrate gender issues into security sector reform (SSR) processes and security sector institutions (SSIs)...read more from DCAF

Eyewitness Account: The Battle for Gaddafi's Capital - February 24, 2011

On Tuesday, Feb. 22, I woke up to the scrap-metal sound of a Kalashnikov outside my window. I looked at the clock. It was four in the morning. For three years, I lived in Libya as the only accredited western journalist in the country. By Wednesday, I would leave a city that was no longer itself...read more from Yahoo

Till death do us part

A mother and her daughter are waiting outside the family court to hand in their request for a divorce. “My husband married off our daughter ten years ago, when she was just 14”, says the woman. “We were living in Iran then and the husband went back to Afghanistan a year later. Since then, we haven’t heard anything from him. Not even by telephone.” She now wants to free her daughter from this pointless marriage...read more from Afghanistan Today

12 killed in Plateau midnight attack - February 22, 2011

Jos- Twelve people were killed and several others injured in a fresh attack on Rwang Fang village in Mangu Local Government Area of Plateau in the early hours of Tuesday by unknown assailants...read more from Vanguard

In broken justice system, women in Kabul find their legal voice - February 21, 2011

Sitting cross-legged on blue velour cushions on the living room floor, the women of the self-help brigade sip green tea, nibble on sugar cookies and report the week’s news from the neighbourhood. ..read more from The Globe

No rights for women, no freedom in a nation - February 20, 2011

PERHAPS THE most shocking thing about the despicable sexual attack on CBS correspondent Lara Logan in Cairo’s Tahrir Square is that to those who know Egypt, it wasn’t shocking at all.

“Why is sexual harassment in Egypt so rampant?’’ asked the headline of a story written by CNN’s Mary Rogers in November. A veteran producer and camerawoman who has lived in the country since 1994, Rogers reported that the experience of being publicly molested unites women across Egypt’s social spectrum...read more from Boston

INDIA - Divorce & seperation on the rise, but laws leave many divorced women struggling

The first year of Rajesha Hamar’s married life was peaceful. In the second, her husband began to drink. Then he started to punch and throttle her when they argued. Then he began to sexually assault her, in front of the relatives with whom they shared their one-room home in a Delhi slum...read more from The Globe

BAOBAB & WLP's flyer to a Panel at the CSW 55 Parallel events

BAOBAB for Women's Human Rights (BAOBAB) and Women's Learning Partnership for Rights, Development and Peace (WLP) invites you to a Panel at The CSW 55 Parallel events on " Women’s Political Participation and Leadership: Challenging Fundamentalisms". click here to view the flyer

South Sudan chosen as name for new country - Febraury 16, 2011

The referendum was part of a deal to end decades of north-south conflict South Sudan has been chosen as the name of what will be the world's newest country when it comes into existence on 9 July, ending months of speculation...read more from BBC

Egypt Women Clash on Sharia After Equality on Tahrir - February 16, 2011

Fatma Emam’s mother accused her of wanting to be a man and threatened to disown her if the 28-year- old joined the protests in Tahrir Square. She went anyway. ..read more from Bloomberg

Probe by Tunisian women's group reveals abuses - February 16, 2011

TUNIS, Tunisia -- Security forces loyal to Tunisia's former president unleashed a wave of terror on the population during the uprising that toppled the autocratic leader last month, with police killing, raping and robbing protesters, a women's group said Wednesday...read more from The Washinton Post

Nobel Prize laureate Ebadi: execution was warning - February 16, 2011

Iranian Nobel Peace Prize laureate Shirin Ebadi believes the execution of Dutch-Iranian Zahra Bahrami was intended as a warning to the opposition. Ms Ebadi told Radio Netherlands Worldwide: “This was actually a warning: if you take to the streets, this could also happen to you.” She said the execution was illegal because of due process violations...read more from RNW

Afghanistan Government Takeover of Women’s Shelters - February 14, 2011

The recent move by Afghanistan ’s Ministry of Women Affairs (MoWA) to take control of women’s shelters is deeply worrying. I have spoken to NGO workers who run these shelters, and they have been outraged by the new legislation...read more from LIVEWIRE


TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran's science minister has called for universities to enforce strict sex segregation, saying allowing men and women to mingle on campus is a sign of the influence of alien western values, media reported...read more from REUTERS

Divorce on the rise in India, but archaic laws leave women cast aside

The first year of Rajesha Hamar’s married life was peaceful. In the second, her husband began to drink. Then he started to punch and throttle her when they argued. Then he began to sexually assault her, in front of the relatives with whom they shared their one-room home in a Delhi slum...read more from The Globe and Mail

Mauritanian Muslim leaders ban female circumcision

Nouakchott, Mauritania: A group of 30 Mauritanian Muslim leaders have issued a religious edict banning female genital mutilation in the West African country...read more from gulfnews

Trainers Aim to Increase Women's Role in Afghan Society - Febraury 9, 2011

WASHINGTON - Human rights has been a hot topic in Afghanistan since the Taliban's near-medieval treatment of Afghan girls and women became known. Now that Afghanistan is working toward a more modern society and government, the rights of the nation's female population are moving front and center for those in charge of NATO Training Mission Afghanistan and Combined Security Transition Command Afghanistan...read more from dvids

Justice for Women in the New Sudans - February 9, 2011

The secession of Southern Sudan following the referendum on self-determination is imminent. Despite the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) prescribing an interim period with a programme of legal reform to address long-standing grievances, no real, conscientious efforts were made to make unity realistic for southerners. Many outstanding areas that the CPA was designed to address – lack of development and opportunity, the use of sharia, and exclusion from governance – are still in place throughout Sudan, and underscore gaps in women’s experiences in the North. The CPA itself has been accused of not including a gender perspective, and women feel as if their needs have not been adequately addressed in post-referendum negotiations and Darfur peace talks...read more form World Policy

Reforms of Afghan women's shelters criticised - February 9, 2011

WOMEN WHO flee domestic violence to family shelters would be forced to submit to intimate medical examinations and then be locked up under a shake-up that critics say is a sop to the Taliban...read form Irishtimes

Information minister tasks N-Assembly on FOB bill - February 9, 2011

The passage of the Freedom of Information, FOI, Bill is a task that must be accomplished by the National Assembly, the Minister of Information and Communications, Mr. Labaran Maku told members of the House of Representatives yesterday... read more from Vanguard

Kenyan Police Accused Of Extrajudicial Killings - February 8, 2011

No one has seen Kenneth Ngoche since his arrest three weeks ago. Family members have searched every police station and mortuary for the 22-year-old, and now fear the worst in a country where police are again being accused of carrying out extrajudicial killings...read more from npr

SOUTH AFRICA: HIV testing in schools is a minefield - February 7, 2011

JOHANNESBURG, 7 February 2011 (PlusNews) - South Africa is preparing to take HIV testing into the classroom as part of its national voluntary HIV testing and counselling (VCT) campaign, but testing kids is controversial and implementing the programme is fraught with challenges – just ask those already doing it...read more from PlusNews

India's Shunned Latrine Cleaners Toil Despite Ban - February 6, 2011

India banned manual cleaning of latrines in 1993. Eight years ago, an advocacy group petitioned the court to enforce the law. A new documentary tells the story of the lives of 300,000 workers, mostly women, who do this degrading work...read more from WeNews

Customs officers shatter woman’s leg - February 5, 2011

A housewife, Umo Edem who was travelling with her husband, Emmanuel Edem, to see her sick mother is now lying in the hospital with her leg strapped in plaster of Paris as a result of bullet wounds from the guns of men of the Nigerian Customs Service...read more from NEXT

‘Early sex increases cervical cancer risk’ - February 4, 2011

Mike Iroezindu, a medical practitioner, has said that exposure to sex before the age of 18 increases the risk of cervical cancer...read more from NEXT

The world of widows: Agony is thy name - February 4, 2011

It used to be worse, in the time past; but it could be better than it is now: What widows go through inspite of the influence of religion and western culture....read more from Vanguard

Police: Gardener admits killing gay rights activist in Uganda - February 3, 2011

Kampala, Uganda (CNN) -- Ugandan police announced Thursday the arrest of a 22-year-old man who they say confessed to killing gay rights activist David Kato....read more from CNN

Jonathan, Sirleaf-Johnson, Ki-moon unveil UN Women's logo - January 31, 2011

President Goodluck Jonathan and Liberian President, Ellen Sirleaf-Johnson yesterday unveiled the United Nations Women’s logo, at the 16th ordinary session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, holding at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Mr. Jonathan who was represented by the former ambassador to Ethiopia, Nkoyo Toyo expressed his hope that African women will find their voice through the new organization. He said that his administration would join other African leaders to support the new organization even as he congratulated the executive director of the UN Women and former president of Chile, Michelle Bachelet for a successful ceremony....read more from NEXT

Iran hangs Dutch-Iranian woman for drug smuggling, report says - January 30, 2011

Tehran, Iran (CNN) -- The Netherlands froze all ties with Iran Sunday after Tehran hanged a Dutch-Iranian woman a day earlier, calling the execution a "shocking act by a barbaric regime."...read more from CNN

U.S. Students Design Ultrasound for Ugandan Midwives

KAMPALA, Uganda (WOMENSENEWS)--A low-cost maternal ultrasound system that began as a class project by a group of college students at the University of Washington in Seattle is to be tested by midwives in Uganda, a country with one of the world's highest maternal mortality rates...read more from WeNews

Bangladesh Praised for Reducing Acid Attacks - January 28, 2011

Bangladesh is singled out from neighboring India and Cambodia for taking stronger measures to stop acid attacks on women in a report released Thursday. The attacks to disfigure and isolate victims are called acts of gender terrorism...read more from WeNews

New UN Women Head Gives 100-Day Action Plan

24 January 2011 – The head of the new United Nations agency promoting women’s rights and full participation in global affairs laid out a 100-day action plan today, embracing a full spectrum of issues from supporting national partners to promoting coherence within the UN system...read more from UN

PAKISTAN: Hundreds of women die for “honour” each year - January 27, 2011

LAHORE, 27 January 2011 (IRIN) - Did 22-year-old Saima Bibi scream out as she was electrocuted at her parents’ home in their village near the southern Punjab city of Bahawalpur in Pakistan? Did she plead with her family for her life? Did she seek mercy? ..read more from IRIN

Yemen protests: Thousands call on president to leave - January 27, 2011

Thousands of Yemenis are demonstrating in the capital Sanaa, calling on Ali Abdullah Saleh, president for more than 30 years, to step down...read more from BBC

Argentina - Femicide - January 19, 2011

BUENOS AIRES, Jan 19, 2011 (IPS) - "I knew he beat her but I never imagined that she would end up like this," Elsa Jerez told IPS, talking about her 24-year-old daughter Fátima Catán, a victim of domestic violence in Argentina who died of severe burns to her body...read more from IPS

Pro-Life Organizations and Leaders to Call for State and Federal Inspections of All Abortion Clinics in America

MEDIA ADVISORY, Jan. 26, 2011 /Christian Newswire/ -- Groups also to demand Congressional hearings on the safety of the abortion industry and it's failure to protect women...read more from Christian Newswire

Women, soldiers clash in Plateau - January 25, 2011

Tension heightened again in Jos and its surburbs on Monday as more than 2,000 women in Vom, Jos South Local Government Area protested the “incessant attacks on Plateau people by uniformed assailants.’’...read more from Punch

Congolese soldiers raped 67 women: UN probe - January 25, 2011

Congolese soldiers raped 67 women in two separate incidents in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo in early January, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said Tuesday. ..read more from Timeslive

Nigeria: UN human rights chief demands justice for victims of Jos violence - January 23, 2011

Lagos, Nigeria - The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms Navi Pillay, has called on the Nigerian government to ensure full justice for victims of the recurrent violence in the northern city of Jos by bringing to account those responsible for the violence as well as the associated human rights violations. Ms. Pillay made the call in a letter dated 21 January 2011, which was signed on her behalf by Mr Anders Kompass, Director of Field Operations and Technical Cooperation Division...read more from Afrique

Midwives Struggle to Deliver Home Births

PRAGUE, Jan 19, 2011 (IPS) - Women’s rights in Eastern Europe have been put into the spotlight as a Hungarian midwife faces five years in prison for assisting with home births...read more from IPS

UN political affairs chief notes progress on role of women in mediation activities

19 January 2011 – The United Nations is making progress in its efforts to incorporate women into its conflict mediation activities – but much more still needs to be done...read more from UN

One woman, One vote - January 19, 2011

On 13 January 2011 in Nigeria, one woman contested the Peoples Democratic Party presidential primary against two men and obtained only one vote. This is annoying...read more NEXT

Information bill: All hope is not lost, says Information minister - January 17, 2011

With attention being shifted to electioneering campaign as 2011 general elections draw near, nothing is expected from the National Assembly with respect to the passage of the Freedom of Information Bill (FoIB). Unfortunately, the bill has become the oldest proposed legislative document deposited at the National Assembly since 1999 when civil rule returned to Nigeria. It was nearly passed in 2007, only that the former President Olusegun Obasanjo refused to assent to it after the Senate had passed it...read more from The Guradian

ECOWAS ministers set standards for media - January 17, 2011

THE Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) ministers in charge of information and communications, at the weekend met in Abuja to adopt a document on standards for the media with the aim of promoting peace, security and democracy in the region...read more from The Guardian

Afghan Taliban 'end' opposition to educating girls - January 14, 2011

The Taliban are ready to drop their ban on schooling girls in Afghanistan, the country's education minister has said.

Farooq Wardak told the UK's Times Educational Supplement a "cultural change" meant the Taliban were "no more opposing girls' education"...read more from BBC

Women Dream of Independence

KAMPALA, Jan 13, 2011 (IPS) - John Garang, the revered late leader of the Sudan Peoples' Liberation Movement, once said that women are the "the poorest of the poor and the marginalised of the marginalised". As the reality of an independent South Sudan approaches, the region's women have vowed they will not remain second class citizens...read more from IPS

New President's First Steps Fuel Optimism of Women's Movement

RIO DE JANEIRO, Jan 12, 2011 (IPS) - The initial steps taken by Brazil's first woman president, Dilma Rousseff, have confirmed that a stronger female presence will indeed be a hallmark of her administration.

After taking office on Jan. 1 and naming nine female ministers, a record in Brazil, Rousseff announced that her main social goal is to eradicate extreme poverty...read more

UN Human Rights Council Should Act to Address Crisis

(9 January 2011) The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran called the 11-year prison sentence of leading human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh a “gross miscarriage of justice” and said that it should be overturned by an appeals court...read more

Human rights in HIV - January 9, 2011

The protection of human rights is key in the efforts to control the HIV epidemic.

THE personal testimonies recorded in the World AIDS day brochure of the WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean tells the story of how human rights fulfilment and violations can facilitate or impede people’s access to effective HIV prevention measures and treatment...read more

Human Rights Education introduced in Nursing Training Colleges - January 8, 2011

Bolgatanga, Jan. 8, GNA - The Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) is piloting Human Rights Education Programmes in some selected Nurses and Midwives Training Colleges in the country aimed at reducing the abuse of patients' rights in accessing health care...read more

Somalia - AL-Shabab bans mixed sex handshakes in Jowhar - January 7, 2011

Men and women have been banned from shaking hands in a district of Somalia controlled by the Islamist group al-Shabab.

Under the ban imposed in the southern town of Jowhar , men and women who are not related are also barred from walking together or chatting in public...read more

Women raped in mass attack in Congo, humanitarian group says - January 6, 2011

Dozens of women were raped in a coordinated attack in the Democratic Republic of Congo on New Year's Day, Doctors Without Borders said Thursday.

The humanitarian agency said 33 women were raped in Fizi, South Kivu, in the eastern part of the war-torn country...read more



Israel’s ex-president Moshe Katsav guilty of rape - December 31, 2010

Former Israeli president, Moshe Katsav, was found guilty of rape and other sex crimes on Thursday, in what Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called a sad day for the Jewish state...read more

Women Claim Equal Share of Family Property - December 29, 2010

MZUZU, Malawi, Dec 29, 2010 (IPS) - Seated on a wooden bench at her Katoto township house in Mzuzu, Grace Mkandawire’s face reflects the traumatic experiences she has endured since her husband’s death in 1998. She looks lost and confused and as she narrates her story there is fear, hatred and resignation that Malawi’s Marital Property Law of (1882) disenfranchises poor women like her...read more

Human rights abuses still in Nigeria - December 21, 2010

The use of torture as a tool for extracting information in criminal investigation is fast declining globally.

Rather than engage in torture, investigators now deploy scientific means of reaching beyond the façade of preliminary information to unearthing the scathing elements of crimes that the suspects are unwilling to disgorge... read more

Ebadi: “Javad Larijani Does Not Understand Human Rights And Cannot Fill This Position” - December 20, 2010

Shirin Ebadi and six other women’s rights activists will hold a sit-in in front of the United Nations in Geneva to protest the dangerous situation of Nasrin Sotoudeh, told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that the Iranian Judiciary has lost its independence and has become a tool in the hands of security forces. Ms. Ebadi criticized Mohammad Javad Larijani’s statements interpreting the efforts of human rights activists as “human rights wars,” she said: ” Those who use vocabulary such as “confront,” “contention,” and “war” about human rights, who that they have fundamentally missed the meaning of human rights. This individual cannot fill such a position within the Judiciary, unless this position has been given to him as gift because of his family relation to the Head of the Judiciary.”...read more

Getting Away Legally With Assaulting Women

DAMASCUS, Dec 10, 2010 (IPS) - Iman Wannouss was just 21 years old when she was married off to a close relative. For the next two decades she gave up her work and raised three children in a loveless and violent marriage...read more


The women fear reprisal attacks if they speak out about the rapes

The three Somali women sat huddled together in a corner of an empty, dusty room in a camp for displaced people in northern Somalia , their faces etched with grief and resignation...read more

New 'Hijab' Charges Brought Against Iranian Rights Lawyer - December 15, 2010

Nasrin Sotoudeh

Iranian lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh (2008 photo)

New criminal charges have been brought against detained Iranian human rights lawyer and women's rights activist Nasrin Sotoudeh, her husband has told RFE/RL's Radio Farda...read more

Zimbabwe Rights Report Urges Prosecution of 2008 Politically Motivated Rapes - December 14, 2010

A new report by the Research and Advocacy Unit and the Zimbabwe Association of Doctors for Human Rights implicates the military, police, war veterans and a militia tied to the former ruling ZANU-PF militia

Zimbabwe human rights groups are stepping up pressure on Harare's national unity government to prosecute the perpetrators of 2008 electoral violence including politically motivated rape before proceeding with another round of elections next year...read more

Sudan YouTube flogging video: Women arrested at march - December 14, 2010

About 30 Sudanese women have been arrested for holding a protest march over a video which allegedly shows two policemen whipping a woman.

The women were detained as they tried to hand a petition to the justice ministry in Khartoum...read more

Afghan women face abuse for fleeing forced marriages - December 13, 2010

MAZAR-E-SHARIF, Afghanistan -- Zaiba, 18, didn't need to see the cover of Time magazine to know what happens to women who flee an arranged marriage or an abusive husband.....read more

New UN partnership seeks to promote reproductive health in Africa - December 13, 2010

13 December 2010 – The United Nations has teamed up with the Millennium Villages Project (MVP) to promote universal access to reproductive health in sub-Saharan Africa, focusing mainly on young mothers...read more

BANGLADESH: When sexual harassment leads to suicide - December 13, 2010

Bangladesh_girlDHAKA, 13 December 2010 (IRIN) - Sexual harassment against girls and women in Bangladesh is turning deadly: 28 women have committed suicide this year and another seven attempted it to escape frequent sexual harassment, says a Dhaka-based human rights organization, Ain O Salish Kendra (ASK)...read more

Women Human Rights Defenders International Coalition

On the occasion of the International Day of Women Human Rights Defenders on November 29 and the 10th anniversary of the UN Security Council Resolution 1325, the Women Human Rights Defenders International Coalition (WHRD IC) critically reflects on Structures of Violence: Defining the Intersections of Militarism and Violence Against Women, the theme of the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence for 2010. The experience of discrimination, intimidation and attack of women human rights defenders lies at the intersection of their gender identity and their position as dissenters in their societies, particularly when working on women’s or sexual rights.

The Coalition identifies militarism, an ideology that subordinates all other interests to those of the military and militarisation, as one of the underlying contexts that heighten the vulnerability of women human rights defenders. Militarism is the process whereby the structural, ideological and behavioural patterns of the state are determined by military values, ideology and institutions. Militarism creates a culture of fear and supports the use of violence, and promotes the use of military means to solve conflicts and enforce economic and political interests. Militaristic environments that result in all forms of repression lead to human rights violations, violence against women, and impunity that endanger the lives of human rights defenders. In the process of militarisation, governments rely more and more on security forces and coercive power to ensure stability. In climates of militarism, cultures of violence are normalised and violence against women is facilitated .
The ideology of militarism, which underpins the governments’ enforcement of counter-terrorism measures, also extends to the use of state coercive power to restrict human rights activism, including mobilisation for women’s human rights. On November 25, Algerian associations organised an International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women in Algiers with participants invited from Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, France, Spain, and Italy. Preparations were made six months before the event and competent authorities were notified. On the eve of November 24, the authorities cancelled permission verbally, enough to scare the hotel manager to cancel the event.

In the context of militarisation, particularly in situations of armed conflict, control over women’s bodies and sexuality becomes central to maintaining social order and pursuing military objectives. Different political interests forcibly manipulate women’s bodies and sexuality in many ways – either to mark political identities, control organisation of communities, or generate legitimacy for political agendas. Parties to the conflict impose discipline and control by enforcing gendered codes of conduct such as rigid stereotyping of gender roles, prescribed dress codes and/or gendered restrictions on movement and access to public spaces. These restrictions are justified in the name of culture, tradition or religion, even though they may in fact be newly imposed measures. Women human rights defenders who resist these forms of militarisation are considered transgressors and punished arbitrarily, as they are not only seen as violating prevailing state norms, but also supposedly fixed cultural values.

Heightened risks for women human rights defenders in situations of armed conflict. Women human rights defenders find themselves caught in the crossfire in situations of armed conflict. Those actively brokering for peace are accused as traitors by opposing forces or branded as terrorists by the State. In many instances, they are abducted or suffer human rights violations in the hands of paramilitary units who try to break their spirit, impose social control and persecute women human rights defenders who comprise the leadership of many of the organisations of disappeared and initiatives to assist displaced people. “Women are abducted, killed, intimidated and harassed because they dare to make the paramilitaries accountable in a country with a long history of disappearances and where we have the second largest number of displaced persons next to Sudan”, said women human rights defenders from Colombia.

The ‘war against terror’ has further legitimised the militaristic crackdown on the exercise of fundamental human rights and freedoms worldwide. Under the cloak of the ‘war against terror’, governments have resorted to declaring a state of emergency or twisted the legal system to legitimise the issuance of counter-terrorism measures or the application of existing national security acts that criminalise political dissent. As a result, women and other human rights defenders have been labelled as threats to national security and continue to be persecuted by government forces. State violence has intensified and become more serious. Increasingly, marginalised groups, particularly sexual minorities, and their defenders that question homogeneous social constructs face brutality from state agents, are forcibly displaced, evicted, ostracised or further marginalised.

Armed conflict further foments the rise of religious and other forms of extremism that backlash on women. In these situations, non-state actors challenge the power of the state to enforce due diligence, making it difficult to make perpetrators of violence against women and human rights violations accountable. Fundamentalist armed groups, operating under the discourses of religion, ethnicity or culture, along with other extremist forces are, in many instances, able to wrest control and advance the agenda of the extreme right by repressing the human rights of women and minorities. Women are pushed out of public life making it dangerous for women human rights defenders to exercise their activism. This has been the case under Taliban-led Afghanistan, yet even with the supposed implementation of democratic processes, women human rights defenders face huge challenges in exercising their rights to assembly and freedom of expression. Similarly, in Iran, women human rights defenders can be charged with violations of state-imposed dress codes as a pretext to curtail their peaceful defence of human rights. And after the 2003 invasion of Iraq, new fundamentalist trends have been aggressively imposed by militias and armed private groups purporting to uphold religious laws that push women out of public life and make it dangerous for women human rights defenders to exercise their activism.

Recognition of women human rights defenders and their contribution in formal and informal peace-building processes. Seldom invited in formal peace processes, women human rights defenders create or invent their own opportunities to participate in peace-building. An Isis International study on Cultural Politics of Conflict, Peace and the UNSCR 1325 concludes that for women who live in situations of armed conflict, their participation in peace processes are “less formal, non-conventional and happen more in their everyday lives”. They volunteer during evacuation services; facilitate inter-faith relations; organise neighbours to meet basic needs; teach or give training on values of peace and diversity; participate, to the extent that they can, in community meetings. Gender discrimination and the gender bias in existing political structures that favour men have excluded them from formal peace processes, but more significantly, account for making their “informal, less conventional” contributions to peace-building devalued and invisible. It is therefore important in the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 to support not only women’s role in formal venues of peace-building, but as further mandated by the Resolution, create more opportunities for “local women’s peace initiatives” to prosper and validate the contributions that women human rights defenders make in their everyday lives to foster peace and security.

A broader understanding of ‘security’. Full protection for women human rights defenders requires revising the prevailing concept of ‘security’. Narrowly limited within the state’s notion of ‘national security’, an ideology of militarism underpins the existing definition, giving primacy to the use of force or exertion of military might to ensure security. Responses to defenders at risk that overemphasise addressing physical threats or anchor the definition of defenders on the basis of the risk they face mirror this masculinist valorisation implicit in this definition of security. Women human rights defenders insist that an integrated concept centred on human security and responsive to gender-specific needs is essential in sustaining activism for women’s human rights.

A broader understanding of security recognises that defenders are rights-holders and frames their needs for security and protection as corresponding obligations to be met by the State. It seeks to enforce the international human rights standards with which to comply with these obligations. It acknowledges the principle of universality and centrality of gender equality and non-discrimination, ensuring that the defence of human rights is not at the expense of women’s human rights and practicing an equitable balance in the treatment of defenders based not on a sameness approach, but on substantive equality that introduces measures to correct differences between defenders because of gender. It underscores responding to immediate as well as underlying and structural causes of violence and discrimination against women and generating an enabling environment for the realisation of women’s human rights. The aim is not only to keep the women human rights defenders safe, but ultimately to sustain their organisations and movements in changing the situation that put them at risk.

Women Human Rights Defenders International Coalition

Amnesty International (AI)
Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD)
Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (Forum Asia)
Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID)
Baobab for Women’s Human Rights
Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR)
Center for Women’s Global Leadership (CWGL)
Coalition of African Lesbians (CAL)
Front Line International Foundation for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders (Front Line)
Human Rights First
Information Monitor (Inform)
International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH)
International Service for Human Rights (ISHR)
International Women’s Rights Action Watch Asia Pacific (IWRAW-AP)
Isis International
ISIS-Women’s International Cross-Cultural Exchange (ISIS-WICCE)
The Latin American and Caribbean Committee for the Defense of Women’s Rights (CLADEM)
MADRE (International Women’s Rights Organisation)
Peace Brigades International (PBI)
Urgent Action Fund for Women’s Human Rights (UAF)
Women’s Initiative for Gender Justice (WIGJ)
Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML)
World Organisation against Torture (OMCT)

16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence Campaign
Center for Women's Global Leadership
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
160 Ryders Lane
New Brunswick, NJ 08901-8555
Tel: 1-732-932-8782
Fax: 1-732-932-1180
Email: 16days@cwgl.rutgers.edu
Website: http://www.cwgl.rutgers.edu

"Tackling violence against women would address the gender dimensions of the Development Goals," says UN expert on violence against women

GENEVA (6 December 2010) - “Violence against women and girls, one of the most pervasive human rights violations throughout the world, is deeply rooted in discriminatory attitudes, practices and systems. Violence against women has been considered by many as the “missing Millennium Development Goal (MDG)” and new challenges have emerged in the fight against such violence due to phenomena such as the global financial and economic crisis, the acceleration in environmental degradation, or the continued use of brutal violence against women as a weapon of war in conflict situations. In this context, multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination have contributed to and exacerbated violence against women. The 16-day campaign once again challenges us to focus on ways, measures and means to eliminate all forms of violence against women...read more

Women's Rights Advocates Make the Case for CEDAW Ratification - December 5, 2010

Women's rights advocates recently told the Senate Subcommittee on Human Rights and the Law that it is critical for the U.S. as a global leader on human rights to ratify the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW)...read more

Turning pain into progress: Kunar women’s rights movement gains momentum, support - December 4, 2010

KUNAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan - What amount of suffering would a person have to endure to commit suicide by lighting themselves on fire?...read more

Sexual Violence Against Haiti's Women - December 3, 2010

Driving through Port-au-Prince's Parc Jean Marie Vincent camp, the first thing I notice is how massive and congested it is. After that, the smell and the heat hit me. I had come to the camp to interview a young rape survivor, as part of a Human Rights Watch mission to Haiti to investigate sexual and other violence against women in the continuing aftermath of the earthquake. Sexual violence often increases in emergencies, when normal structures have broken down and women struggle to meet basic needs for food, water, shelter and hygiene...read more

AFGHANISTAN: Women remain prisoners

KABUL, 2 December 2010 (IRIN) - Zarghoona* has completed her three-month sentence at a prison in Kandahar Province, southern Afghanistan, but she is not allowed home because no male relative has shown up to guarantee that she will not run away from home again...read more

Violence Against Persons Prohibition Bill Passes Through its 2nd Reading in the House of Representatives

Abuja - November 30th 2010: The Violence Against Persons (Prohibition) Bill was read by the Honourable of the House of Representatives with an overwhelming numerical endorsement. Members, especially the male sponsors and supporters drew attention to the fact that a comprehensive legal frame work to respond to old and emerging forms of gender based violence was long overdue...read more

Slowly winning fight against FGM in Northern Senegal - November 30, 2010

PODOR – The harm done by female genital mutilation is still enormous in Podor, a city in the north of Senegal, say officials at the local hospital. While the practice is declining slightly, some religious leaders in the region still support it...read more

The trial of the two Women's Rights Defenders adjourned - November 23, 2010

Press Release

State Prosecution Officer Sainey Joof told the court that the case against GAMCOTRAP is not a Civil case but it is the State that has brought in the case against the two Senior Officers of the Organisation.

The court hearing of the trial of Dr. Isatou Touray, the Executive Director and Amie Bojang- Sissoho, Programme Coordinator for the Gambia Committee on TraditionalIsatou_and_Amie1 Practices (GAMCOTRAP) failed to proceed yesterday Monday November 22nd 2010 at the Banjul Magistrates Court before Magistrate Emmanuel Nkea. The prosecution applied for an adjournment of the hearing because their witnesses were not present...read more

Somalia Girls in the USA - Caught between Two Worlds, Cultures - November 21, 2010

In the wake of prostitution charges involving underage Somali girls, adults are worried about the pressures many girls face in Minneapolis' Somali community.

When Mohamed Barre heard the disturbing news about prostitution involving gangs and young Somali girls, his thoughts quickly turned to his daughters...read more

Kenya - Sex-Workers Opportunity with Microloans - November18, 2010

Nairobi, Kenya : With higher levels of economic growth than expected, Kenya ’s banks have already begun giving successful loans to a specific and special group of women. Many of these women have struggled through poverty with only one option available to them as they raise their children alone without assistance.

Known in Kenya as sex-workers – prostitutes – they work selling the only thing they have available to sell – their own bodies...read more


Elders in Bukwo and Kapchorwa districts of Uganda are preparing to circumcise over 200 girls next month despite a new law banning the practice...read more

Gaza's Blockade Silences Voices of Women - November 17, 2010

We have just visited the Gaza Strip where we met many courageous people trying to live relatively normal lives despite the crippling effects of the illegal Israeli blockade. The blockade was imposed to punish the Hamas-led government, but it is women and children who are paying the highest price...read more

Pakistan: Ensure safety of Asia Bibi and her family and repeal Pakistan’s Blasphemy Laws - November 17, 2010

The International Solidarity Network, Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML) is deeply shocked that a court in Nankana Sahib, Pakistan, has sentenced a 45-year-old Christian woman, Asia Bibi, to death on the charge of having committed “blasphemy”. Although illiterate, she has been accused of denying the institution of prophet-hood by citing copious examples from the key texts of Islam. We join local human rights organizations, international women’s groups and religious minorities in calling for Pakistan to urgently repeal its Blasphemy Laws. We also appeal to the authorities to guarantee the safety of Asia Bibi and her family from the rage of local extremists, as well as investigate the violent persecution of the Christian community in the Punjab...read more

Reps trade words over FOI bill - November 15, 2010

ABUJA – The Freedom of Information Bill has pitted its sponsor, Rep. Abike Dabiri of the Action Congress of Nigeria, representing Ikorodu, Lagos against her colleague, Rep. Wole Diya also of the same party but representing Shomolu, Lagos. Diya accused Dabiri of not doing enough to push the piece of legislation, still lying on the floor of parliament after seven years...read more

Syria Makes Progress on Maternal and Child Health - November 15, 2010

An independent UN expert has commended Syria on the progress it's made on multiple health indicators, including maternal and child health....read more

UN appeals for funding as cholera outbreak worsens in Haiti - November 12, 2010

GONAÏVES, Haiti, 12 November 2010 – The death toll in Haiti's cholera epidemic has now climbed to some 800, with more cases reported in the capital, Port-au-Prince, and other areas outside the Artibonite Region where the outbreak originated. In response to the worsening situation, the United Nations has issued a new appeal for $163 million in donor aid... read more

Shadi Sadr wins Katharine & George Alexander Law Prize

The Katharine & George Alexander Law Prize brings recognition to lawyers who have used their legal careers to help alleviate injustice and inequity. The 2010 Award winner is Shadi Sadr, Iranian Human Rights and Women's Rights lawyer, and WLUML Council Member. The Committee selected Shadi Sadr because of her ceaseless dedication to championing the cause of Iranian women and risking her freedom to defend those who are wrongfully accused and imprisoned. Below is the text of Sadr's acceptance speech at Santa Clara University in California on 11 November....read more

Make UN Security Council Resolution 1325 Real For Women's Peace and Security - November 10, 2010

October 31 marked the tenth anniversary of the momentous UN resolution on women, peace and security—UNSCR 1325. This set a new international standard that requires all parties—the UN, states, and armed militias—to ensure that women participate fully in peace negotiations and post-conflict reconstruction. If this really worked, it would transform our militarized world...read more

The Symbolism in Employing Women - November 8, 2010

Media battles broke out in Saudi Arabia with the majority clearly in favor of allowing women to work as ‘cashiers’ in shops. It may seem strange that this simple profession is the subject of controversy, whether in terms of its approval or rejection, but this particular profession is in fact a symbolic matter. Saudi Arabia is a remarkable country, where there are two opposing trends. In the Kingdom there are millions of students, and dozens of colleges, universities, and institutes specializing in female education. The state allocates the largest budget in the developing world for female training, educating women to the highest degree. Yet at the same time, the state forbids women from working, except in limited roles. As a result, one woman had to travel for hours each morning, in order to work in a school, in a remote village...read more

Life of Jailed Human Rights Lawyer at Great Risk - November 4, 2010

Nasrin(4 November 2010) The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, should immediately intervene with Iranian authorities to ensure the physical well being of detained human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran said today... read more


Peace without freedom for Afghan women is doomed - October 15, 2010

A culture of brutality and intimidation still silences many women.

The haunting portrait of a young, disfigured Afghan woman on Time magazine's cover in August issued a stark reminder that the stakes in Afghanistan are high - and that the consequences of failure are brutal, especially for women...read more

International Day of Rural Women - October 15, 2010

Rural women: powerful agents of change

As a young girl, Frida Wanjiri Mwai watched women in her village in central Kenya collaborate to replace traditional thatched roofs with waterproof corrugated iron. Later, as an adult farmer and mother of six, this memory prompted her to form a women’s group to buy water storage tanks that were too expensive to purchase individually. She and her friends pooled their money and bought the tanks for each member in rotation....read more

Women asked to vote for colleagues in District Assembly Elections - October 14, 2010

Ghanaian women have been asked to vote for their colleagues, who would contest the forthcoming District Assembly Elections, to enable them to assume leadership positions in the governance of the country...read more

ČR criticised in UN for not compensating sterilised women - October 13, 2010

Geneve/Switzerland, Oct 12 (CTK) - Several Czech NGOs have criticised the Czech Republic in the U.N. in Geneve for not having removed discrimination against women, particularly, for not having compensated women sterilised against their will, Human Rights League's lawyer Katerina Cervena has told CTK....read more

Parental leave scheme in motion - October 13, 2010

The wheels are in motion for the implementation of the federal government's paid parental leave scheme.

The government's parental leave implementation group met for the first time in Melbourne on Wednesday ahead of the introduction of the scheme in January next year...read more

Greater push needed to ensure women’s rights, says UN expert - October 12, 2010

12 October 2010 – With one in three women around the world being beaten, coerced into sex or abused, more must be done to ensure the human rights of women, a member of the United Nations expert body monitoring compliance with the international pact on eliminating discrimination against women said today....read more

Nigeria: Between Honour Killings, Child Brides And Forced Marriages - October 12, 2010

At the Law and Individual Rights Session, the family law issue of child brides and forced marriage was a subject of discourse. Since this is an issue affecting mostly developing countries, the panel consisted of human rights experts from India, Nigeria, and Pakistan. In attendance also were practitioners from developed countries like Britain and Germany given that they are affected as a result of the immigrant population in their countries...read more

AP Enterprise: Questions raised on Congo slaughter - October 11, 2010

MUSEKERA, Congo — The mass graves are hidden in the darkening shade of a hard-to-reach banana plantation, high up a mountain above the cloud line, at the end of a treacherous dirt track slippery with mud and animal dung...read more

Let her keep her citizenship - October 11, 2010

CITIZENSHIP is important as it is also an identity.

Emphasising the value of women's ctizenship, United Nations Human Rights adviser for gender and conflict Indai Sajor encouraged participants at a regional training on eliminating violence against women to expand women's citizenship, participation and leadership...read more

Afghan Female Literacy Centres bring knowledge and new priorities to remote areas - October 11, 2010

NILI, Afghanistan, 11 October 2010 – Around 30 girls and women ranging in age between 12 and 70 sit in a small room in Nili, the capital of Afghanistan’s remote Daikundi province. Some have brought their children to the class, where they are learning to read for the first time...read more

Kenya VP urges women to embrace politics - October 11, 2010

Vice Kalonzo Musyoka has called on women to fully involve themselves in political affairs and governance issues.

Mr. Musyoka said time for women to participate only as bystanders, cheerleaders or passive observers is long gone and urged the Women, Gender and Development Directorate to support women's participation in political and electoral processes in countries scheduled to hold elections...read more

Calls for Gender Equality, Women's Empowerment 'Must Be More Than a Mantra; It Must Become a Lived Reality' for Women in All Countries, Third Committee Told - October 11, 2010

Head of Newly Created 'UN Women' Michele Bachelet Addresses Committee; Also Hears Reports on Violence against Women, Obstetric Fistula, Anti-Discrimination Committee

Addressing Member States for the first time as head of the newly created UN Women, Under-Secretary-General Michelle Bachelet told delegates today that the establishment of the new entity was a message from the General Assembly that more needed to be done to make the empowerment of women a reality...read more

Political solutions to the gender gap - October 10, 2010

Gender equality is about both women and men. It is not a women’s agenda but a social justice agenda, says Chong Eng, adding that political solutions are needed to narrow the gender gap...read more

Palisades Park to display first U.S. memorial to women forced into sexual slavery by Japanese in WWII - October 9, 2010

It happened thousands of miles away, and more than 60 years ago. But the pain lingers; so, too, does the determination to make sure it is not forgotten...read more

France burqa ban passes last legal hurdle - October 7, 2010

PARIS — France's top legal authority approved Thursday a law banning full-face veils in public, the last hurdle for the ban, which aims to protect women's rights but has been criticised as stigmatising Muslims...read more

Kyrgyz rights activists appeal to all parties to restraint in public speeches - October 7, 2010

On the even of the parliamentary elections human rights activists of Kyrgyzstan again appeal to all participants of the race to restraint in their public speeches, the council of human rights activists stated today, October 7, 2010...read more

Widow "Cleansing" Tradition - Rights Violation

Widow cleansing dates back centuries and is practiced for example in countries like Zambia , Kenya , Malawi , Uganda , Tanzania , Ghana , Senegal , Angola , Ivory Coast , Congo and Nigeria . It gives a nod to a man from the widow’s village or her husband’s family, usually a brother or close male relative of her late husband, to force her to have sex with him – ostensibly to allow her husband’s spirit to roam free in afterlife. It is also rooted in the belief that a woman is haunted by spirits after her husband dies or that she is thought to be unholy and “disturbed” if she now is unmarried and abstains from sex.” Another traditional belief holds that a widow who has not been cleansed can cause the whole community to be haunted. In many instances a widow must undergo the ritual before she can be inherited. Because this practice is obligatory, it should be considered a form of gender-based discrimination that results in sexual abuse...read more

Human Rights court rules that Mexico is responsible for soldier rapes of indigenous women - October 5, 2010

MEXICO CITY — The Inter-American Court of Human Rights condemned Mexico on Monday for failing to protect the rights of two indigenous women who were raped by soldiers in 2002.

In two separate rulings, the Costa Rica-based court said Mexico failed to guarantee the rights to personal integrity, dignity and legal protection of Valentina Rosendo and Ines Fernandez, both of southern Guerrero state....read more

Lima to have first female mayor ever - October 5, 2010

LIMA, Peru — A moderate leftist looked Sunday night to be headed by a narrow margin to becoming Lima's first elected female mayor.

A victory by Susana Villaran would give the left control of Peru's coastal capital — with 7 million people home to one in three of the Andean nation's inhabitants — for the first time in nearly three decadese....read more

Saudi women fight for control of their marital fate - October 4, 2010

RIYADH — Women in Saudi Arabia are fighting back against tribal traditions that make them hostage to the whims of their fathers and male guardians who alone can decide who their future husbands will be....read more

Mumbai - Victims afraid to report cases: Survey - October 4, 2010

The Maharashtra State Human Rights Commission has undertaken a sample survey of all governmental establishments, colleges and universities in three districts to take stock of complaints about sexual harassment at the workplace. The research wing of MSHRC has chosen Nanded in Marathwada, Yawatmaal in Vidarbha and the state capital — Mumbai. Research officer Dr Jaishree Patil said the sample survey has been undertaken to ascertain the ground realities with respect to complaints of sexual harassment at the workplace and in colleges and universities...read more

Appeals Case Gives Hope to Guatemalan Refugees - October 3, 2010

A Guatemalan woman's asylum case could add being female to the list of other reasons--such as race, religion, nationhood or politics--for being granted freedom from persecution in the U.S. Thousands of refugee applicants have a stake in the decision...read more

Samar May Win Nobel Prize for Advocacy of Afghan Women's Rights
By Meera Bhatia and Marianne Stigset - October 3, 2010

Human rights advocate Sima Samar may become the first person from Afghanistan to win the Nobel Peace Prize for her efforts to promote women’s health and education, according to the International Peace Research Institute...read more

Equality Now Hails Historic Creation of a New UN Mechanism That Will Focus on Eliminating Discrimination Against Women in Law and Practice - October 1, 2010

On 1 October 2010 at the 15th session of the Human Rights Council (HRC), member states adopted by consensus a resolution to create a new mechanism to accelerate the elimination of discrimination against women in law and practice. "This is the culmination of the hard work of so many in government and civil society," said Faiza Jama Mohamed, Nairobi Office Director of Equality Now. International human rights organization Equality Now has taken a leading role in systematically studying the pervasiveness of sex discriminatory laws across the globe and in 2005 it proposed the need for a new special procedure within the UN dedicated to eliminating discrimination against women in law...read more

Jakarta rejects plan for virginity tests - September 28, 2010

The Indonesian government has dismissed a lawmaker's proposal to force teenage schoolgirls to undergo virginity tests.

Women's affairs ministry official Wahyu Hartomo said such tests would violate basic human rights and potentially harm the health of young women...read more

Chechnya Coerces Women on Dress, Activists Say - September 27, 2010

MOSCOW — Women in Chechnya are under pressure to adopt Islamic dress, according to human rights activists and an Islamic fundamentalist video circulating on the Internet in the latest example of deteriorating women’s rights under Ramzan A. Kadyrov, the president of the restive southern Russian republic...read more

US Activist Defends Immigrant Women Against Gender-Based Violence - September 27, 2010

Layli Miller-Muro wasn't even out of law school before she helped litigate a case that revolutionized asylum law in the United States.

The case involved Fauziya Kassindja, a 17-year-old girl who fled the West African country of Togo to avoid a tribal practice known as female genital mutilation...read more

Equality Still Elusive For World's Women - September 23, 2010

Women right's advocates have made some strides in recent decades. But most of the world's poorest are female, fewer girls than boys attend school and women are still vastly underrepresented in leadership positions. Former Ireland President Mary Robinson, the World Bank's Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and columnist Nicholas Kristof explain the challenges of improving women's lives worldwide...read more

Human rights abuse on the rise in Kenya:Report - September 22, 2010

The Kenya Human Rights Commission (KHRC) has released a shocking report on the status of human rights record in the country.

The report compiled between July 2005 and June this year details an increase in cases of police brutality, extra judicial killings and torture...read more

On the U.N. report on Congo genocide - September 22, 2010


Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza was widely considered the leading opposition candidate in this year’s presidential election, likely to win had the election been fair, but instead of being free to run, she was jailed briefly and is still not permitted to leave Kigali.

The U.N. report on human rights abuse, including genocide, in the Democratic Republic of Congo has been explosive in the international community, but it simply confirms what has long been a “Pucinella” secret that many knew but pretended not to know. So many atrocities were committed, some during broad daylight, in both Rwanda and Congo, during this time that they could not be concealed forever...read more

For Indian Rape Laws, Change Is Slow to Come - September 21, 2010

NEW DELHI — Should a woman’s sexual experience and history be introduced as evidence in the trial of her accused rapist? Will the Indian legal system ever recognize forced sex between husband and wife as rape? What constitutes the “modesty” of a 10-year-old girl? ...read more

Human Trafficking – A Women’s Issue - September 21, 2010

Women comprise at least 56% of the world’s trafficking victims. The feminisation of poverty and the feminisation of migration mean that women from poorer and developing countries are particularly vulnerable and the proportion of women trafficked is higher in these countries. Human trafficking is the fastest growing criminal industry in the world, and ties with the illegal arms industry as the second largest, after the drug-trade....read more

Human rights key to achieving Development Goals - September 21, 2010

“My husband broke my nose and hit me with timber over the back of my head. I went to the police to tell them to arrest him – they said they would do it but they didn’t.” Margaret*, East Sepik, Papua New Guinea...read more

I'd do it again, says honour killer - September 20, 2010

There is a growing push in the Arab world to have men responsible for so-called honour killings treated as murderers by the courts.

Every year hundreds of women are killed by their husbands or brothers or another male family member for supposedly bringing shame on their families...read more

Nigeria: Literacy - No Justification for Marginalising Women, Girls - September 9, 2010

Excluding women and girls from basic education, has remained a persistence injustice to their human rights says UNECSO. In this piece, Stella Eze reports that there is urgent call for more investment and commitment...read more

EU: Suspension of Iran stoning case not enough - September 9, 2010

BRUSSELS — The European Union presidency said Thursday that Iran's suspension of a stoning sentence against a woman convicted of adultery is not enough and demands it be completely overturned...read more

Attacks On Afghan Children - September 8, 2010

Afghan women and girls continue to be frequent victims of attack by elements within Afghanistan that want to suppress women's rights, namely the Taliban. Under Taliban rule women and girls were prohibited from going to school and participating in most aspects of society. While the incidents are still being investigated and no one has claimed responsibility, 2 girls schools in the Afghan capital, Kabul, were recently struck by apparent gas attacks that injured more than 100 schoolgirls as well as their teachers, including one that sickened 60 students on August 25th and another on August 28th that left 48 young girls in need of medical care...read more

Mali battles over women's rights - September 7, 2010

Even educated women have only a limited view of the possibility of extended human rights and opportunities

Deep in the vast, burnt-orange Malian desert in the town of Gao, 17-year-old Zina is getting ready for school. One of the luckier Malian women, she is among the 33% who can read and write. "I hope to be a doctor when I finish my studies," she says, through wide eyes framed by her vivid blue veil. "I'm not sure if I'll get married before my studies or afterwards," she adds "but inshallah, I'll find a good husband."...read more

Method to examine rape victims is archaic: former Chief Justice of Delhi HC - September 7, 2010

Human Rights Watch, an international NGO working for human rights, released a report on problems with the existing methods of forensic examination of rape victims on Monday. Authored by Aruna Kashyap, the report deals with “absolute ignorance of survivor rights by the Judiciary and the State.”...read more

Maternal mortality, human rights and accountability

September 3, 2010 - High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said that maternal mortality is often a result of violations of key human rights principles including accountability, equality, non-discrimination and meaningful participation...read more

US rights group urges UN chief to secure release of Iranian women's rights activist - September 4, 2010

A U.S. human rights group urged U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to secure the release of a prominent Iranian journalist and activist who goes on trial Saturday on charges that carry the death penalty...read more

Libya: Step Ahead for Women on Nationality Rights - September 2, 2010

(Beirut) - Libya's new nationality law granting women married to foreign spouses the right to pass their own nationality to their children is a significant move forward for women's rights, Human Rights Watch said today. But the law still contains some contradictory provisions that could be interpreted to perpetuate discrimination, Human Rights Watch said...read more

Lagos Lawmakers To Pass FOI Bill - Sept 1, 2010

Members of the Lagos State House of Assembly are making plans to pass into law the State version of Freedom of Information Bill, P.M.NEWS has learnt.

The bill, when passed into law, would make it easy for the people of the State to forward complaints and information regarding any government officials to appropriate quarters....read more

Deaf and Mute 16-yr Old Nepali Girl Beaten and Raped As 'Punishment' - August 31, 2010

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received information regarding rape and abuse of a 16 year-old domestic worker in Kathmandu on 18 July 2010 by her employers. Instead of rescuing the victim, police officers from Budha police station have reportedly kept her in detention twice for 24 hours without providing her with adequate medical treatment. In spite of the initial reluctance of the police, a rape case was eventually filed on 21 August and the two alleged perpetrators have been arrested. Nevertheless, strong doubts remain regarding the police's diligence in investigating the case. It is to be noted that police negligence and the lack of accountability of the police system often act as strong obstacles for rape victims seeking justice...read more

SOUTHERN AFRICA: More sterilizations of HIV-positive women uncovered - August 30, 2010

Sterilization More women are coming forward with stories of being sterilised

JOHANNESBURG, 30 August 2010 (PlusNews) - Veronica* did not realize she had been sterilized while giving birth to her daughter until four years later when, after failing to conceive, she and her boyfriend consulted a doctor.

Saudi stores break taboo with women cashiers - August 26, 2010

Saudi Arabia's leading supermarket chain has broken the country’s strict taboo on women working in public with a pilot programme of women cashiers, a company official said...read more

Schoolgirls and teachers sick from poison gas in Afghanistan - August 25, 2010

Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN) -- Dozens of schoolgirls and teachers were sickened Wednesday by poison gas in Afghanistan, medical and government officials said... read more

Jonathan’s wife seeks women governors in 2011 - August 24, 2010

Mrs. JonathanThe President’s wife, Dame Patience Jonathan Monday erxpressed optimism at the possiblity of women governors in 2011.

She said women in politics should be given encouragement...read more

African women have high hopes in new anti-HIV gel

NIGERIAN women and their counterparts in other African countries have applauded the promise of Tenofovir, an anti-retroviral drug contained in a microbicide gel reputed to help protect women who can’t negotiate safe sex with their partners against HIV infection...read more

Free at Last

Comfort Monday, the 17-year-old inmate, who had been incarcerated for eight months while pregnant at the Kirikiri Female Prison, Apapa, finally walked out of jail on Tuesday, 17, 2010, following the intervention of the Lagos State governor, Babatunde Fashola...read more

Afghan elections: Record number of women stand for parliament - August 24, 2010

electionElection posters line a street in Jalalabad, east of Kabul, Afghanistan Photograph: Rahmat Gul/AP


A record number of women are running in Afghanistan's critical parliamentary elections next month despite many being inundated with threatening phone calls, including death threats from insurgents...read more

Controversial 'Family Bill' Returns To Iranian Parliament's Agenda - August 24, 2010

Iran's parliament is preparing to discuss a bill this week that would allow men to marry additional wives without the consent of their first wife, and would tax dowries...read more

UN confirms reported gang rape of women by rebels in DRC Congo

23 August 2010 – A United Nations human rights team has confirmed that members of two armed groups in the volatile east of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) raped more than 150 women during an attack on a village in North Kivu province last month, a UN spokesperson said today...read more

Burqa can't be forced: High Court -Aaugust 23, 2010


The court also ordered relevant officials to explain why forcing girls to wear burqa (veil) and keeping them out of sports and cultural activities were illegal.

Dhaka, Aug 22 (bdnews24.com)—The High Court has ruled that no women can be forced to wear burqa at work and educational institutions...read more

'Rise in female genital mutilation' in London - August 22, 2010

The number of cases of female genital mutilation (FGM) reported in London has risen and some procedures are taking place in the city, a doctor has said.

Dr Comfort Momah, who runs a clinic in Guy's and St Thomas' Hospital, said she sees 350 women and children a year...read more

Words and Deeds: Holding Governments Accountable in the Beijing +15 Review Process - August 2010

At the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women in 1995, 189 governments pledged in the Beijing Platform for Action to “revoke any remaining laws that discriminate on the basis of sex.” In 2000, the UN General Assembly established a target date of 2005 for revocation of all sex-discriminatory laws. Fifteen years after the adoption of the Beijing Platform for Action, and five years past the set target date, numerous laws that explicitly discriminate against women are still in force...read more

India Tries Using Cash Bonuses to Slow Birthrates - August 21, 2010

SATARA, India — Sunita Laxman Jadhav is a door-to-door saleswoman who sells waiting. She sweeps along muddy village lanes in her nurse’s white sari, calling on newly married couples with an unblushing proposition: Wait two years before getting pregnant, and the government will thank you...read more

Brutality Against Women Stirs Fear In Afghanistan - August 20, 2010

Women walk at a street market Women walk at an outdoor market in downtown Kabul. The resurgent Taliban and several recent executions in accordance with an extreme interpretation of Shariah law have human-rights activists worried, particularly for women.

The Taliban has denied that its militants tortured, hanged and shot a widow in Afghanistan's western Baghdis province for adultery...read more

Afghanistan: SKSW/WLUML Statement: Stop stoning and other forms of cruel punishments by the Taliban - August 18, 2010

The Global Campaign to Stop Killing and Stoning Women and the Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML) International Solidarity Network condemn the recent incidents of violent punishments by the Taliban in Afghanistan....read more

Africa: New Book On Child Protection to Be Launched - August 17, 2010

A new book outlining how military training programme works to protect the rights of children in conflict prone areas will be launched in Nairobi on August 20th, 2010....read more

Rapes of Christian Girls in Pakistan Reflect Hidden Trend

Sexual assault by Muslim extremists is commonplace but rarely reported.

FAROOQABAD, Pakistan, August 16 (CDN) — The vulnerability of Christian girls to sexual assault in Pakistani society emerged again last month as a Muslim landowner allegedly targeted a 16-year-old and a gang of madrassa (Islamic school) students allegedly abused a 12-year-old in Punjab Province.... read more

India probes tribal woman 'forced to walk naked' - August 11, 2010

The Women's Commission in the Indian state of West Bengal has announced an inquiry into allegations that a tribal woman was forced to parade naked.

Officials say she was forced to walk without her clothes for nearly 10km (6 miles) through three villages and was filmed on a mobile phone...read more

Clinton tells Iran to halt executions - August 11, 2010

US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has appealed to Iran to stop executing people.

Ms Clinton has added her plea to the growing chorus of civil rights groups which have condemned the country for an expansion in the list of capital crimes...read more

UPDATE: Iran: Mohammad Mostafaie seeks asylum in Norway and his wife is released from Evin prison - August 9, 2010

Since our last update on the case of Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani, and her former attorney Mohammad Mostafaei, there have been a few important developments: Mostafaei, who had fled to Turkey after the arrest of his wife and brother in-law in Tehran, was arrested by the Turkish authorities and placed in a detention centre. He has been released, and is now in Norway seeking asylum. Although the brother in-law was released shortly after his arrest, Mostafaei’s wife, Fereshteh Halimi, continued to be held at Evin prison. However, on Saturday 7 August, Halimi was also released from prison. Mostafaei hopes that his wife and young daughter will be able to join him shortly in Norway...read more

Police: Taliban Execute Pregnant Afghan Woman In Public - August 9, 2010

Police in northwestern Afghanistan say Taliban fighters publicly executed a pregnant Afghan woman after accusing her of committing adultery...read more

Nigerian passport rules are stacked against women - August 8, 2010

Last week, the Nigerian Consulate in Johannesburg, South Africa, told a Nigerian woman she cannot apply for her children without a letter from the children’s father, and kindly offered to issue the documents as soon as the paternal endorsement is received...read more

UN Special Representative Decries ‘Overlooked’ Rape During Conflict

6 August 2010 – Rape is one of the world’s greatest peace and security challenges, a senior United Nations official said today, adding that rape in times of conflict remains one of the least-condemned war crimes, leading to impunity for perpetrators....read more

Yerima to face prosecution - August 4, 2010

Ahmed Sanni Yerima may soon be arraigned in court for alleged child abuse and marriage to a minor. The former governor, who is now a senator, may be prosecuted over his marriage to an Egyptian minor, a 14-year old school girl, Eladly Maryam Maged Saleh....read more

18-year-old girl sues CROSIEC over August 28 council polls - August 5, 2010

An 18-year-old girl has filed a fresh suit against the Cross River State Independent Electoral Commission (CROSIEC) to stop it from conducting local government elections in the state on August 28...read more

Woman sentenced to stoning, her attorney seeking asylum await fates - August 4, 2010

(CNN) -- An Iranian court may render the final verdict Thursday in the case of Sakineh Mohammedie Ashtiani, sentenced to death by stoning in Iran for allegedly committing adultery...read more

Stopping Violence Against Women Worldwide - August 3, 2010

Violence against women is a worldwide crisis, and a bill scheduled to come before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday, the International Violence against Women Act, would improve the way US foreign assistance is provided to address such violence. The US Violence against Women Act and several reauthorizations created critical funding, strategies, and structures to prevent violence against women and girls and to support survivors. While this law has been immensely helpful in the United States, foreign assistance to combat violence against women in other countries has been patchy, meager, and uncoordinated...read more

African leaders agree to expand maternal health campaign as AU Summit concludes - August 2, 2010

African leaders participating in the 15th African Union (AU) Summit, which concluded on Tuesday, agreed to expand a campaign aimed at curbing maternal mortality on the continent and adopted other "key actions" in an effort to reduce infant and maternal mortality, PANA/Afrique en ligne reports....read more

Teenage pregnancies worry Abia officials - August 1, 2010

Increasing rate of teenage pregnancies in Abia State has become a source of worry for officials of the state Women Affairs ministry, leading them to call on mothers and community leaders to help curtail the tide as it was capable of reducing the contribution of women to the development of the state....read more

Women standing for council seats in Malawi, against the odds

It's expensive trying to run an election campaigns in Malawi because most potential voters expect contestants to distribute handouts, such as T-Shirts, clothes, food and even money as a sign of 'compassion' to their constituents. If they don't, they're deemed 'stingy leaders' and voters shun them...read more

Senate to confirm Kagan as court's 4th-ever woman - July 30, 2010

WASHINGTON – Her confirmation assured, Elena Kagan is on the brink of becoming the fourth woman ever to serve as a Supreme Court justice....read more


Massive flooding in Pakistan has killed at least 430 people as monsoon rains continue to bloat rivers, submerge villages and trigger landslides, according to rescue and government officials...read more


Prohibition aims to “restore Palestinian morals."
The Hamas Islamic movement that controls the Gaza Strip has banned shops from displaying women’s underwear in their windows, saying it offends public morality....read more


At an age when we would regard them as still being children, thousands of young children from Northern Thailand have and continue to be, lured, forced or coerced into prostitution. Girls as young as 10 years old have been sold into the brothels of Bangkok and other cities in the region and even overseas. In some areas as many as 90% of girls have left their village to work...read more

INTERPOL investigates Yerima marriage - July 29, 2010

The International Criminal Police Organization [INTERPOL] has asked the National Central Bureau (NCB) in Lagos, for relevant information concerning the marriage of Ahmed Yerima, the former Zamfara State governor to an Egyptian minor....read more

Expelling unwed mothers banned in Philippines - July 29, 2010

In an effort to promote women’s human rights in the Philippines, it is now illegal to ban unmarried single mothers from enrolling in schools...read more

CONGO - Where so many children die bearing children - July 28, 2010

The Congo is a difficult place to be born, or borne. Dangerous for the baby, dangerous for the mother and dangerous for the first five years of life — a dismal mortality rate shared with many nations in sub-Saharan Africa...read more

‘Women most affected during crisis' - July 23, 2010

Jos crisisWomen, who do not necessarily partake in conflict situations or the processes that lead to them, are usually the most affected by the several ethno-religious crisis that have hit Nigeria in recent times...read more

Women in northern Afghanistan face Taliban revival - July 22, 2010

Women living in Afghanistan's safest region are retreating behind the veil amid fears they are being stalked by a resurgent Taliban determined to trample their rights....read more

Honour killings are cold blooded murder: NHRC chief - July 21, 2010

NEW DELHI: Former CJI and National Human Rights Commission chief K G Balakrishnan on Tuesday described honour killings as "cold blooded murder", adding that more than a new law, awareness was needed in society against such inhuman acts. The statement comes at a time when the National Commission for Women and prominent women rights activists have been demanding a separate legislation to define honour crimes...read more

Burqa ban backfire? - July 20, 2010

Last week, French lawmakers approved a ban on burqas that cover the face, asserting that they “don't square with the French ideal of women's equality or its secular tradition.” Although not yet law (the proposal will be voted on in September in the French Senate), the overwhelming support for it in the National Assembly (335 yes votes, one no vote, and 221 abstentions) signals that the bill is likely to pass. (It’s also likely to be challenged in the European Court of Human Rights, but that’s another story.).. read more

Syria Bans Full Islamic Veils At Universities - July 19, 2010

DAMASCUS, Syria — Syria has forbidden the country's students and teachers from wearing the niqab – the full Islamic veil that reveals only a woman's eyes – taking aim at a garment many see as political.... read more

Now girls say 'I won't do' - July 17, 2010

There is no denying that child marriage still exists in this modern world, but more and more girls have started resisting early matrimony in favour of further studies. Binay Singh reports....read more

Protect victims of abuse - July 16, 2010

It was nighttime in Parc Marie Vincent when the five men grabbed her, Gentile told Human Rights Watch researchers. A few short weeks after losing her home in the earthquake, she was in a packed camp for the quake survivors when she was kidnapped, raped, beaten and forced to perform oral sex.... read more

Lack of housing forces victims of domestic violence in Latin America to stay with abusers - July 16, 2010

An investigative study on domestic violence and housing in Latin America released today reveals that likely hundreds of thousands of women remain in homes where they are subjected to violence simply because they have no alternative place to go...read more

India - Lure of cash aids India's efforts to reduce number of women dying in childbirth - July 15, 2010

Urmila Rawat gave birth to her first two children in her thatched-roof home, as Indian village women have always done. Now eight months pregnant, Rawat assumed she would deliver her third baby at home as well...read more

Women's, Children's Groups Warn of Negative Consequences of Child Marriage - July 15, 2010

U.S. lawmakers convened a hearing on Capitol Hill Thursday to discuss the issue of child marriage and its effect on girls and society. Non-governmental organizations estimate issue affects 60 million girls worldwide... read more

France - National Assembly Lower House Votes Overwhelmingly for Burqa Ban - Senate yet to Vote - July 14, 2010

French parliament on Tuesday voted in favor of a bill to totally ban the wearing of full face-covering veils in public spaces...read more

Latin America & Caribean - Labour Inequality for Women - UN Report - July 13,2010

Women in Latin America and the Caribbean are still discriminated against in the labour market and receive lower wages than men for the same work, according to a new United Nations report which also points to women in the region spending more time on unpaid domestic or care work...read more

Iran's Assault On Civil Society - July 12, 2010

The government of Iran has turned its back on a rich tradition of civil society, perpetrating human rights abuses against many activists and ordinary citizens who just wanted the right to be heard...read more

Malaysia - Islamic Courts Appoints First Female Judges - July 8, 2010

Malaysia's Islamic Shariah courts have appointed their first female judges — a move praised by women's rights activists Thursday as a boost for a judicial system often accused of favoring men....read more

Home Births - Benefits & Risks - Review of Research - More Needed - July 8, 2010

Babies are three times more likely to die after planned home births than after hospital deliveries, a new review of the research says. Many of the deaths are probably related to breathing difficulties and failed attempts at resuscitation, say researchers. However, the overall risk of death is still very low...read more

Too Young to Wed?

Malaysia: There was an increase in marriages involving underage Muslims in the Federal Territory last year. This goes against the assumption that child marriages are now on the decline due to changing cultural trends... read more

The Millennium Development....Guys? - July 7, 2010

Consider these truths:

Men don't get pregnant.

Completely preventable complications of pregnancy, labor, unsafe abortion and AIDS-related illnesses remain the leading causes of death and disability among women in countries throughout the world due to lack of political will, lack of funding, and the politicization of sexual and reproductive health by fundamentalist religious and political actors...read more

Oshiomhole decries neglect of public education - July 7, 2010

Nigeria: Classrooms blocks built by the Niger Delta Development Commission and Education Trust Fund in Edo State are already cracking and not up to standard, Edo State governor, Adams Oshiomhole, said yesterday...read more

African Women Fight Female Genital Mutilation - July 7, 2010

Vienna (Women's Feature Service) - Waris Dirie, an Austrian of Somalian origin, is an inspiration to the many victims of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), especially in Africa. Born into a family of Somalian nomads, Dirie's genitals were mutilated when she was three years old. She was sold in marriage at 13 years after which she fled Africa. From the heart of the desert to the West, where she became one of the highest paid models, Dirie has come a long way. She has been chosen as the United Nations spokesperson against FGM and is a fierce crusader against the ritual of FGM, calling it one of the biggest challenges facing Somalian women... read more

No hope for information bill - July 7, 2010

It is becoming increasingly clear that the Freedom of Information (FOI) Bill will not be passed by the present National Assembly....read more

Groups campaign for Rights Bill - July 6, 2010

In a bid to promote and protect the human rights of women, especially with regard to their participation in governance, a group of nongovernmental organisations under the umbrella of the National Coalition on Affirmative Action (NCAA), have proposed the passing of the Gender and Equal Opportunities Bill in Lagos State....read more

54th Session on the UN Commission on the Status of Women Progress but Huge Political Challenges Ahead - July 5, 2010

2010 is a significant year for the global women's movement. It marks the 15th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action (BPA), the 30th anniversary of Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Discriminations Against Women (CEDAW), known as the "Bill of Rights of Women and Girls, " and 10 years since the Millennium Development Goals ( MDGs) were drawn up. It is a time to reflect, measure the progress, and work on the challenges, failings, and future prospects...read more

Pressure on parliament: Passage of the Gender Based Violece (GBV) Bill in Lagos,Nigeria. - July 2, 2010

On the 30th June 2010, the Gender Based Violece (GBV) Bill titled Violence Against Persons (Prohibition) Bill 2010 went through its first reading at the House of Representatives. To view the draft copy of the GBV Bill click here

Note that desired amendments to the Bill (either inclusion or exlusion) should be forwarded to the LACVAW Secretariat for collation that will be taken on by the delegated House Committee when it gets to the Committee stage. LACVAW Secretariat can be reached on wraparhvprj@yahoo.com; lacvawthematicworkinggroup@wrapanigeria.com OR +234-8038996298; +234-8035670173; +234-8033144905.

In historic move, UN creates single entity to promote women’s empowerment - July 2, 2010

In a bid to accelerate the empowerment of women, the General Assembly today voted unanimously to create a dynamic new entity merging four United Nations offices focusing on gender equality, a move hailed by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and other senior officials...read more

UN releases practical toolkit on how to deter sexual violence in war - June 30, 2010

From peacekeepers in Darfur escorting women and girls to prevent “firewood rapes” to blue helmets in Kosovo setting up an emergency hotline for at-risk communities and lone women, the United Nations launched today its first compilation of the best practices of its staff to prevent, deter and respond to the use of rape as a war tactic...read more

Malaysia: Too young to wed? - June 30, 2010

There was an increase in marriages involving underage Muslims in the Federal Territory last year.

This goes against the assumption that child marriages are now on the decline due to changing cultural trends...read more

UN Women Born! Civil Society Celebrates Creation of Gender Equality Entity After Four Years of Advocacy - June 30, 2010

The Gender Equality Architecture Reform (GEAR) Campaign celebrates the United Nations General Assembly resolution, agreed to on 30 June and to be formally adopted by the General Assembly on Friday, 2 July, to establish “UN Women”—the new gender equality entity at the UN. This move has been sought by women’s organizations and other civil society organizations around the world since the UN established a System-Wide Coherence Panel for UN Reform...read more

USA - WAL-MART Women Employees File Largest Class Action Lawsuit - June 29, 2010

More than one million current and former Wal-Mart female employees alleging gender discrimination stand to be certified this summer as the largest civil rights class action in history...read more

Education is a key step in changing the supply and demand equation of human trafficking - June 28, 2010

“Postcards? Book on Pol Pot? Bracelet?” In the ruins of Angkor Wat, two young Cambodian girls hawked their wares with entrepreneurialism beyond their years.

Their questions were calibrated to win over American tourists: “What if we can tell you the name of the American President and the population of Cambodia? Then will you buy something?”....read more

Female discrimination and the bar association - June 27, 2010

Female discriminationThat there is no female candidate running for president in the upcoming 2010 Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) national elections should come as no surprise, a foremost female lawyer has said....read more

Girls have a right to know

The Human Rights Council at its annual full day discussion on Women’s Human Rights in Geneva has been told that progress on gender equality in education is so slow it is unlikely to be achieved before 2040. This year’s discussion, “Empowering Women through Education” heard from a number of experts who talked of some progress but in totality described a situation where millions of girls continue to experience disadvantage and discrimination that prevents an effective education... read more

INDIA - Fruit Trees Village Project saves Girls' Lives

"This is our way of meeting the challenges of dowry, global warming and female foeticide. There has not been a single incident yet of female foeticide or dowry death in our village," Singh says... read more

Australia gets first woman PM - June 24, 2010

Australia's new Prime Minister Julia Gillard(Reuters) - Australia appointed its first woman prime minister, Julia Gillard, who vowed on Thursday to end division over a controversial mining tax, resurrect a carbon trade scheme and call elections within months.

Former prime minister Kevin Rudd made an emotional and ignominious exit, quitting just before the center-left Labor Party was to dump him in an internal ballot and less than three years after a stunning election victory in 2007...read more

Government approves procurement of HIV test kits - June 24, 2010

The federal government, as part of its effort to sustain the fight against HIV/AIDS in Nigeria, yesterday approved the procurement of Anti retroviral drugs and HIV test kits to replace the old stock

This was done following the deliberation of a memo submitted by the minister of health, Onyebuchi Chukwu that the HIV kits will be exhausted by the middle of July 2010. The minister of information, Dora Akunyili said the scarcity “will pose a great threat to the successful management of the HIV and AIDS in country.”.....read more

SAUDI ARABIA: Women threaten to breastfeed drivers if they aren't allowed to drive - June 22, 2010

SAUDI ARABIA: Women threaten to breastfeed drivers if they aren't allowed to driveMany were stunned when Saudi cleric Sheik Abdel Mohsen Obeikan recently issued a fatwa, or Islamic ruling, calling on women to give breast milk to their male colleagues or men they come into regular contact with so as to avoid illicit mixing between the sexes...read more

Kyrgyzstan: Security Forces Abuse Civilians - 21 June 2010

Dosmatov died hours after being severely beaten by local Kyrgyz police during an early morning security operation in the village.The wife of 58-year-old Sharabiddin Dosmatov mourns her dead husband before preparing his body for burial at their home in the predominantly ethnic Uzbek village of Nariman, south Kyrgyzstan. Dosmatov died hours after being severely beaten by local Kyrgyz police during an early morning security operation in the village. © 2010 Moises Saman for Human Rights Watch.

(Osh) - Kyrgyz troops wounded at least 20 people, two of whom died, during a security operation on June 21, 2010, in the predominantly Uzbek village of Nariman in southern Kyrgyzstan, Human Rights Watch said today. The operation followed the removal of barricades erected by the residents to protect the village...read more

How Kenya welcomes refugees - 17 June 2010

Kenya: Abuse and Neglect of Somali Refugees
Shot at and raped. Arrested and beaten. Detained and deported. Extorted and robbed. Threatened and insulted. Ignored and shunned. The treatment of hardened criminals in some far-flung police state? The fate of political opponents by a repressive regime? Not quite. For Somali refugees - 80% of them women and children - this is their welcome to Kenya...read more

Afghanistan - Female Suicide On Rise in Herat

Officials report 50 per cent rise in self-immolation and poisoning over last year.

7 Jun 10 - Mahjabin, 23, weeps as she describes the events that led her to attempt suicide by swallowing rat poison. Speaking slowly and with difficulty from her bed in Herat hospital, she said that five years ago, after she returned from living in Iran, her father and brothers prevented her from studying and then forced her into marriage...read more


According to the latest UN official figures, more than 500,000 women die every year from pregnancy-related causes. This means one death every minute. Meanwhile approximately 10 million women annually suffer pregnancy-related injuries and disabilities.
A study by the United Nations Human Rights Office states unequivocally that maternal mortality and morbidity is a matter of human rights, and that a human rights-based approach is essential to addressing this serious global problem...read more

IRAQ: Human Rights Watch slams high rates of female genital excision in Iraqi Kurdistan - June 16, 2010

“I still feel the fear,” Runak recalled as she told her story of undergoing genital excision at age 7.

The 26-year-old recounted her experience to Gola Ahmad Mohammad, an activist for the Assn. for Crisis Assistance and Development Cooperation (WADI). “When they tried to circumcise me, I ran away from one village to another to avoid the process. But they found me and brought me back home. I heard my mom when they were cutting a piece of my genitals say to me, ‘This will make you pure and the water of your hands become halal [permissible],” indicating she would otherwise consider her impure...read more

Taiwan experiencing gender imbalance

(11-06-10) Taipei - a dropping birth rate is not the only population problem challenging Taiwan, as the gender ratio of newborns recorded 109 males for every 100 females in 2009, the Bureau of Health Promotion (BHP) said Friday.

The natural ratio of its kind should be 105 males per 100 females, said BHP Director-General Chiou Shu-ti. Based on this ratio, the higher number of male births means that "around 4,000 baby girls disappeared last year," according to Chiou... read more

Civil Society Pushes for Action Ahead of MDG Review

UNITED NATIONS, Jun 15, 2010 (IPS) - As a major high-level meeting on the Millennium Development Goals approaches at U.N. headquarters in September, anti- poverty and human rights activists are stepping up efforts to have their voices heard.

Informal hearings are taking place Monday and Tuesday among the U.N. General Assembly, civil society organisations and the private sector, in hopes of gaining many different perspectives for the September plenary meeting, which will review progress on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)....read more

Independent candidacy will boost women's chances in politics - 15 June 2010

women in politics


Independent candidacy is a major way for more women to be elected into political offices, a former minister has said.

Olufunke Adedoyin, a former minister of state on Youth Development, said this in a paper she delivered at the Annual Press Week organised by the Ogun State Chapter of the Nigeria Association of Women Journalists, in Abeokuta on Monday... read more

Thousands flee ethnic violence in Kyrgyzstan - 15 June 2010

Osh, Kyrgyzstan (CNN) -- Smoke rose over the streets of Osh and sporadic gunfire could be heard Monday as ethnic groups continued to battle in the strategically important Central Asian nation of Kyrgyzstan.

An estimated 80,000 ethnic Uzbeks have fled the ongoing clashes against ethnic Kyrgyz, causing one aid official to describe the situation as a "humanitarian catastrophe," according to the International Committee of the Red Cross....read more

Italy - Moroccan Father on Trial for Daughter's Honour Killing - 14 June 2010

Pordenone, 14 June (AKI) – The fast-track trial of a Moroccan immigrant accused of stabbing his 18-year-old daughter to death last year in an ‘honour’ killing opened in the northeastern Italian town of Pordenone on Monday.

El Ketaoui Dafani, a cook, allegedly became enraged after discovering his daughter Sanaa had a love affair with a 32-year-old Italian man... read more

Lead clean-up in Nigerian village is life-or-death race against time - 14 June 2010

Dareta, Nigeria (CNN) -- In remote northern Nigeria, it is now a race against time to prevent a catastrophe in the world's worst-ever recorded outbreak of lead poisoning.

Officially 163 people have already died in Zamfara state -- 111 of them children. But no one knows the true figures...read more


Kabul, Afghanistan -- About 60 schoolgirls in Afghanistan's Balkh province appear to have been poisoned and required hospitalization, the Ministry of Health said Sunday.

The victims ranged in age from 9 to 14. Most suffered minor reactions, ministry spokesman Sakhi Kargan told CNN.

It's at least the third suspected poisoning of girls attending schools in Afghanistan this week...read more

Former child slave fights to end trafficking in Ghana

Sankor, Ghana (CNN)(20 May 2010)-- A former child slave is rescuing victims of child trafficking in Ghana and has built a school to help give them a better future.

Once a child slave himself, James Kofi Annan is turning what would be a crippling experience for many into a drive to stamp out child trafficking.... read more

Nobel Laureate Defamed on Iranian TV, Colleague Arrested
Fresh Wave of Attacks against Human Rights Defenders - 11 June 2010

(11 June 2010) An Iranian state television program defamed human rights lawyer and Nobel Laureate Shirin Ebadi in a heavily edited program on 10 June, and an associate and spokesperson for Ebadi’s organization was detained, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran reported today...read more

Ondo removes Akure Oba - 10 June 2010

Oba Akure, dethroned


The embattled Deji of Akure, Oba Oluwadare Adesina Adepoju has been deposed by the Ondo state government.

After five years of controversial rule as the paramount ruler of Akure Kingdom, the Deji of Akure, Oluwadare Adesina Adepoju, Osupa III was yesterday deposed by the Ondo State government for beating up his estranged wife, Bolanle, in the street....read more

Congo Police Move to Combat Violence Against Women 9 June 2010

New police unit seeks to protect young women and girls in Katanga province, but cultural ideas need to change, too.
By Héritier Maila - International Justice - ICC
ACR Issue 260

There are signs of positive action to counter the culture of gender-based violence in Katanga province in the southeast of the Democratic Republic of Congo, DRC.

Perhaps the most significant step taken in recent months has been the creation of a new police unit to protect young women and girls, which was officially inaugurated in the provincial capital Lubumbashi on April 21...read more

What About the Women? - 8 June 2010

Zimbabwe’s Supreme Court has just ruled against an archaic interpretation of law allowing only fathers to apply for their children’s passports. While clearly a victory for women’s rights — granting mothers equal parental authority in securing travel documents — the basis of the ruling was that the previous practice infringed upon the child’s freedom of movement.
welcome baby


Welcome Baby by Agnes Nyanhongo, Zimbabwe (cc) richmanwisco


In Nigeria, the marriage of Senator Sani Ahmed Yerima to a 13-year old Egyptian girl has also raised controversy, pitting those prioritizing Yarima’s right to privacy and to practice his religion (notwithstanding the debate as to whether his religion actually allows for such a marriage) against advocates for women’s and children’s rights. UN officials commenting on the case spoke out against the marriage, noting that it was “in contradiction to the Convention on the Rights of the Child.”...read more

Door to Political Office Opens for Senegalese Women 7 June 2010

DAKAR, Jun 7, 2010 (IPS) - A law on gender parity in electoral lists, approved by a large majority in Senegal's National Assembly, has been welcomed by women from diverse walks of life.

For legislator Ndèye Fatou Touré, the law will give a considerable boost to women. "Parity is a lifting of obstacles, an open door. This law will allow women equal access to decision-making," she told IPS...read more

President's wife wants more women in politics - June 4 2010

Patience Jonathan, the wife of Nigeria's president, yesterday advocated the participation of more women in politics, saying the involvement of women in the country's politics is unimpressive... read more.

Trafficking one of the fastest growing criminal activities in the world - 3 June 2010

GENEVA (2 June 2010) – “Trafficking in persons -one of the most appalling forms of human rights’ violations- remains one of the fastest growing criminal activities in the world, and the role of regional organizations fighting against it cannot be underestimated,” UN Special Rapporteur Joy Ngozi Ezeilo said on Wednesday, before presenting her annual report* on trafficking in persons, especially women and children, to the Human Rights Council.... read more

Rethinking the law on sexual assault - 3 June 2010

The Criminal Law Amendment Bill 2010, being proposed to bring about changes in the criminal laws with respect to protections against sexual assault, has been a subject of discussion and popular misinterpretation in the recent past. While the move by the government to re-examine the law on sexual assault is long overdue and the opening up of this subject a welcome step, it is necessary to underscore the concerns raised by rights advocates across the country....read more

Sterilized: against our will - 2 June 2010

This week three cases of forced and coerced sterilization of HIV positive women will be heard before the High Court in Namibia to seek compensatory damages for harm done to the individual women.  The women are each suing the Ministry of Health and Social Transformation and are amongst the first cases in Africa in which women are seeking compensation.  As a demonstration of support protestors will convene at Namibian embassies and High Commissions in Zambia, Swaziland, South Africa and the United States, to demand justice.....read more

Oba assaults wife - 1 June 2010

Olori Bolanle

Oluwadare Adepoju Adesina the Deji of Akure land, on Sunday evening physically assaulted one of his wives in a free for all in Akure, the Ondo State capital.

Oba Adesina, accompanied by his latest wife, Remi Adesina, descended on Olori Bolanle Adesina and inflicted injuries on her...read more

Child Brides Escape Marriage, but Not Lashes - 30, May 2010

Sakhina, 15, was sold into marriage to pay off her father’s debts when she was 12 or 13. She is one of four fugitive child brides at a shelter in a secret Kabul location.KABUL, Afghanistan — The two Afghan girls had every reason to expect the law would be on their side when a policeman at a checkpoint stopped the bus they were in. Disguised in boys’ clothes, the girls, ages 13 and 14, had been fleeing for two days along rutted roads and over mountain passes to escape their illegal, forced marriages to much older men, and now they had made it to relatively liberal Herat Province...read more

EQUALITY NOW welcomes decision by American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to withdraw its 2010 policy statement on Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) that endorsed pediatricans ’ “NICKING” of girls’ genitalia - 27 May 2010

New York - International human rights organization Equality Now welcomes the AAP’s decision to withdraw its ill-conceived revised policy statement on female genital mutilation (FGM) issued on April 26, 2010. The new policy statement essentially promoted Type IV FGM, as categorized by the World Health Organization (WHO), and suggested that federal and state laws might be more effective if they “enabled pediatricians to reach out to families by offering a ‘ritual nick’.” In a release issued today, the AAP stated that it has “retired” its 2010 revised statement on FGM, is opposed to “all forms of female genital cutting” and “does not endorse the practice of offering a 'clitoral nick.'” ...read more

Aceh: Regulation banning women from wearing revealing clothing takes effect - 27 May 2010

Authorities in a devoutly Islamic district of Indonesia's Aceh province have distributed 20,000 long skirts and prohibited shops from selling tight dresses as a regulation banning Muslim women from wearing revealing clothing took effect Thursday. The long skirts are to be given to Muslim women caught violating the dress code during a two-month campaign to enforce the regulation, said Ramli Mansur, head of West Aceh district. Islamic police will determine whether a woman's clothing violates the dress code, he said....read more

Women empowerment is Govt commitment - 27 May, 2010

Islamabad—Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani has reiterated the commitment for social, political and economic empowerment of women to ensure their active participation in the national development process.

He was inaugurating three-day women convention on the Role of women Parliamentarians in peace, security and reconciliation here Tuesday organised by Women Parliamentarians Caucus....read more

German's legalized prostitution brought more exploitation than emancipation to women - 26 May 2010

German chief police reported yesterday sex trafficking is on the rise in the country. The chief officer also said that sex trafficking has increased 11 percent from last year and 70% over five year period. While many advocates for legalized prostitution argued that legalization should improve the rights of prostitutes and eliminate discrimination, the case in Germany shows otherwise. Rather, the sex industry in Germany became a magnet for sex traffickers from Eastern Europe and African countries. Further, it became a source of exploitation of German as well as other foreign women rather than their emancipation to support their right to sell their bodies...read more

Committee on Rights of Child examines report of Nigeria - 26 May 2010

The Committee on the Rights of the Child today reviewed the combined third and fourth periodic report of Nigeria on how that country is implementing the provisions of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Introducing the report, Iyom Josephine Anenih, Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development of Nigeria, said that Nigeria had mainstreamed the provisions of the Convention on the Rights of the Child into national legislation and practice with a 2003 law, the Child’s Rights Act. Thirty six states of the Federal Republic of Nigeria had adopted the law as well, and efforts were being stepped up to ensure the remaining 12 states adopted the law so that all Nigerian children could enjoy the rights guaranteed in the Convention.....read more

Marriage: Female senators petition against Yerima - 20 May 2010

Sani Yerima

ABUJA—THE Senate will, next Wednesday, begin an investigation into the alleged marriage of Senator Sani Yerima, ANPP, Zamfara, to a 13-year-old Egyptian girl.

Chairman, Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges, Senator Omar Hambagda, who disclosed this in an interview, yesterday, said the committee had received petitions from three serving female senators over the issue...read more

Yerima: Arrested! Detained By NAPTIP - 19 May 2010

The Nigerian Feminist Forum (NFF) sincerely appreciates the efforts of NAPTIP who it is understood arrested and detained Senator Ahmend Sani Yerima for roughly three hours today before being released on bail after he had produced in his own hand writing a statement on his alleged marriage to a 14 year old Egyptian girl named as Mariam Maged M. Eladly. The marriage took place at the National Mosque in Abuja. Mariam apparently is the daughter of Senator Yerima’s driver in Cairo. The sum of $100,000 was allegedly paid as bride price to the girls parents....read more

My Daddy Hit Her Again - 13 May 2010

HAVANA TIMES, May 13 – I was waiting with my sister in the medical office where cases of mental health are examined following a consultation with a psychologist.  It was here that I saw a woman arrive who was 25 years old, according to her report, though she looked more like 35 or 40....read more

Clinton: ex-Taliban must respect women's rights - 13 May 2010

WASHINGTON – Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is ruling out any political reconciliation with Taliban militants who refuse to recognize the rights of women.....read more

Trafficking of women & girls has become an industry - 11 May 2010

A joint research conducted between two independent organizations in Iran, the Center for Cooperative Women’s Affairs and the Committee for the Defense of Victims of Violence indicates the skyrocketing trend of kidnapping and trafficking Iranian women and girls as slaves, to neighboring countries such as the UAE, Pakistan, Afghanistan, as well as Europe and Asian countries...read more

Mali Imam living in fear after backing women's rights - 10 May 2010

An Imam in Mali is living in fear after backing a new family law which no longer obliges wives to obey their husbands, angering Muslim groups.....read more

General election 2010: first female Muslim MPs elected - 7 May 2010

Shabana Mahmood wins in Birmingham Ladywood.As election votes around the country continue to be counted this morning, the historic announcement came that the country has voted for Britain's first female Muslim MPs........read more

Young girls face trafficking as lack of rain drives worsening rural poverty - 7 May 2010

The rescue of 17-year-old Nitumoni (name changed) from a brothel in Shillong city recently points to a new danger as climate change takes hold in Northeast India - trafficking of vulnerable women.

Nitumoni's widowed mother, from Madhupur village, used to work as a daily wage labourer at rice fields in her village, near the Bhutan border....read more

Saudi king's photo brings women's rights into focus - 6 May 2010


King Abdullah, centre left, and Crown Prince Sultan pose for a picture with a group of women at a seminar on health and the community. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia is not normally associated with radical moves but the 85-year-old monarch is making waves with signals encouraging greater tolerance of women's rights....read more

Saudi women get in the driver's seat - 5 May 2010

saudi women


With changes under way within the kingdom, it looks likely that female motorists will finally return to the roads

The issue of women driving in Saudi Arabia resurfaced recently with a headline in the Saudi-run Elaph website predicting they will be allowed to drive within two months. Such predictions have appeared in the past without being fulfilled – much to the dismay of many women who would like to drive their own cars. But with recent progressive changes in the kingdom, the prospect of women driving seems more plausible now than before....read more

Why are US doctors allowing genital mutilation? - 1 May 2010

Paediatricians have erred by suggesting that 'nicking' female genitalia should be allowed as a cultural compromise.....read more

Child bride backlash - 30 April 2010

The sad case of Elham Assi, a 13-year old Yemeni girl who died from internal hemorrhaging after being raped by her 23-year-old husband, has certainly sparked conversation in Yemen over the longstanding practice of child marriage. But the conversations -- taking place everywhere from Sanaa kitchens to the parliament building -- aren't exactly what you'd expect....read more

Lift barriers on jobs for women: UN rights chiefgulf- 24 April 2010

UN human rights chief Navi Pillay yesterday criticised restrictions on women’s employment in some Gulf countries and called for those barriers to be lifted...read more

Muslim woman fined for driving veiled in France - 23 April 2010

veiled Muslim woman


'Vision of a motorcycle rider wearing a helmet is more restricted'

NANTES - The lawyer for a French Muslim woman fined for driving while wearing a full-face veil accused police on Friday of abusing her human rights, as the government pushes to ban the garment...read more

The Gender Evaluation Methodology for Internet and ICTs (GEM) - 22 May 2010

GEM is a guide to integrating a gender analysis into evaluations of initiatives that use Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) for social change.

GEM provides a means for determining whether ICTs are really improving women's lives and gender relations as well as promoting positive change at the individual, institutional, community and broader social levels....read more

Thousands at risk of forced sterilization in China - 22 April 2010

Authorities in southern China must not violate human rights in carrying out their reported plans to sterilize thousands of people this month in a drive to meet family planning targets, Amnesty International said on Thursday.

According to Chinese media reports, officials in Puning City, Guangdong Province aim to sterilize 9,559 people, some against their will, by 26 April...read more


The Supreme Court of Chubut argued that Section 86.2 of the NCC decriminalises abortion in case of rape of any woman.

In March 2010, the Supreme Court of Chubut and a panel of the Court of Appeals of the same province decided two cases regarding abortion in case of rape...read more

ZESA Four finally released - 20 April 2010

WOZA members


WOZA members arrest themselves in solidarity outside ZESA headquarters in Harare

The four WOZA members arrested on Thursday outside ZESA headquarters, Jenni Williams, Magodonga Mahlangu, Clara Manjengwa and Celina Madukani, have finally been released from police custody after spending five nights in cells...read more

Iran - A senior Iranian cleric says women who wear immodest clothing and behave promiscuously affect earthquakes - 20 April 2010

Iranian women walk past a shopIn this file photo,two conservatively-dressed Iranian women walk past shops selling women's clothing in the holy city of Qom , in Iran . Senior Iranian cleric Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedighi was quoted by Iranian media as saying Friday, April 16, 2010 that women who wear "immodest" clothing and behave promiscuously are to blame for earthquakes, with the cleric's unusual explanation following a prediction by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that a quake is certain to hit Tehran and that many of its 12 million inhabitants should relocate. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis, File)

A senior Iranian cleric says women who wear immodest clothing and behave promiscuously are to blame for earthquakes.
Iran is one of the world's most earthquake-prone countries, and the cleric's unusual explanation for why the earth shakes follows a prediction by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that a quake is certain to hit Tehran and that many of its 12 million inhabitants should relocate... read more

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Utah's Feticide Law Puts Miscarriage on Trial - 20 April 2010

Under a new Utah law, women who miscarry under certain conditions are open to murder charges and life sentences. Feticide laws in other states focus on abusive boyfriends and husbands, but this one targets the woman herself...read more

E-Disscussion - Women’s Political Participation in 21st Century: Using Communication Technologies - 19 - 30 April 2010

Women and men around the world have been using different technology platforms during their political campaigns and to continue dialogue with their constituencies as elected representatives...read more

Pregnancy of girl age 10 fuels abortion debate - April 19, 2010

A pregnant 10-year-old, allegedly raped by her stepfather, has become the latest lightning rod in the country's heated abortion debate...read more

Tajik Girls Lose Out on Schooling - 15 April 2010

Financial pressures add to commonly-held view that girls need education less than boys. By Nafisa Pisaredjeva in Dushanbe

Khosiat Najmiddinova’s two younger daughters may never finish school, as she sees education as a priority only for her sons...read more

Good News! Teenage Rape Survivor Gets Legal Abortion in Argentina - 15 April 2010

A 15-year-old girl from the southern Argentinean province of Chubut was given a legal abortion on 20 March. She was pregnant after being raped by her step-father. An appeal judge ruled that the abortion could go ahead after she had previously been denied the abortion by a family court judge...read more

Police arrest and detain WOZA members - 15 April 2010

On 15 April 2010, at about 12:30hours, police officers from Harare Central Police Station arrested 70 members of WOZA who were participating in a peaceful procession in Harare.

Four hours later at least 66 members of WOZA - including 4 men and a child - were released without any charges being levelled against them. The other members, namely Jenni Williams, Magodonga Mahlangu, Clara Manjengwa and Selina Madukani, were detained at Harare Central Police Station...read more

Sudanese polls begin with women voter turnout very high - 11 April 2010

Khartoum, Sudan - Voting in Sudan's first polls in 25 years and the six th since independence in 1952 kicked off peacefully here Sunday despite initial fears of potential voter apathy after 13 parties pulled out, alleging massive irregularities... read more

Yemeni child bride dies of internal bleeding - 9 April 2010

A 12-year-old Yemeni bride died of internal bleeding following intercourse three days after she was married off to an older man, the United Nations Children's Fund said... read more

UPDATE: Malaysia: Kartika’s caning sentence commuted to community service - 9 April 2010

In a Press Statement issued by Sisters in Islam (SIS), the Malaysian women's group, one of the most well-known nongovernment groups in this Muslim-majority country, registered their happiness with the decision by Sultan of Pahang, Duli Yang Maha Mulia Tuanku Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah, to commute Kartika’s caning sentence to community service... read more

Girl 'raped, buried alive' digs herself out - 8 April 2010

A Jamaican taxi driver has been accused of raping a 12-year-old girl and then burying her alive after he thought he had strangled her to death, authorities said on Wednesday...read more

A new danger for sex workers in Bangladesh - 5 April 2010

I'm walking along a brightly painted corridor when a couple of young girls catch first my eye, and then my arm. They smile at me, and giggle; they look about the same ages as my elder daughters, 17 and 15...read more

Domestic Violence Finally Debated in Armenia - 2 April 2010

Politicians act as beaten and abused women at last begin to break their silence. By Gayane Abrahamyan in Yerevan

Domestic violence is rife in Armenia, with a third of women saying they have been abused at home - but at least it is now being talked about...read more


Nigeria: Sharia Court orders immediate suspension of all debates on amputation - 31 March 2010

A Sharia Court sitting in Kaduna has ordered the immediate suspension of all debates on the amputation of Bello Buba Jangebe on online sites - Facebook and Twitter. In 2000, Jangebe made history as the first person in Nigeria to have an amputation carried out under Islamic law after being found guilty of stealing a cow. The judge had a few weeks ago issued a restraining order in favour of the applicants to prevent a non-governmental organisation (NGO), the Civil Rights Congress (CRC) (defendants), from discussing Jangebe’s case in a forum opened by the group on Facebook and Twitter... read more

Gender Equality Law Adopted in Georgia - 29 March 2010

Tbilisi — The Parliament of Georgia passed a Gender Equality Law on 27 March. The legislation provides for the establishment of a national women’s machinery, the enhancement of women’s security, equality in the labour market and the strengthening of women’s political participation. The law also introduces gender-responsive planning and budgeting on the part of the government.

Female suicide bombers kill dozens on Moscow subway - 29 March 2010

Two female suicide bombers blew themselves up on the Moscow subway during the morning rush hour today, killing at least 35 people and injuring 51, Russian officials said. Yuri Luzhkov, the mayor of Moscow, told reporters the suicide bombers were believed to have set off their explosives as trains approached Lubyanka and Park Kultury metro stations. "The first data that the FSB [Federal Security Service] has given us is that there were two female suicide bombers," he told reporters at Park Kultury... read more

YEMEN: Child bride gets  divorce - 28 March 2010

Child brideSANAA, 28 March 2010 (IRIN) - Throngs of journalists pushed forward to get a picture of 12-year-old Sally al-Sabahi as she signed her divorce papers in the Yemeni capital on 27 March. As she dipped her thumb in dark ink and pressed it next to her name on an official document, she became Yemen ’s fourth child bride divorcee.

Yeriman Bakura Marries 13-year-old Egyptian Girl - 26 March 2010

Former Zamfara State governor, Ahmed Sani, Yeriman Bakura, has married a thirteen-year- old Egyptian girl. LEADERSHIP WEEKEND learnt that the marriage took place at the national mosque, Abuja , two weekends ago. The former governor, now a senator, paid a bride price of $100,000, the equivalent of roughly N15m. He also divorced one of his wives to facilitate the marriage. In Islam a man is only permitted to have four wives. Yeriman, who popularised the Shariah code of Islam in Nigeria , could not have the wedding in Egypt ; the Egyptian authorities would not put up with such a marriage as their laws forbid that sort of union. Yariman Bakura is well into his 60s and the laws in Egypt consider his bride a minor... read more

Rape must never be minimized as part of cultural traditions, UN envoy says - 25 March 2010

Sexual violence during conflicts is all too often downplayed and treated as part of local cultural traditions instead of being viewed as a war crime, a senior United Nations official has warned as she called for much greater international action to defeat the scourge... read more

Where are the women in Haiti’s Reconstruction? - 25 March 2010

Women and gender issues were glaring in their absence from the March 31st Haiti International Donors’ Conference held in New York when billions of dollars were pledged to finance Haiti’s reconstruction.  Haiti’s National Plan of Action, the blueprint guiding reconstruction efforts and resource allocation, was based on a Post-Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA). The PDNA resulted from a two month process led by the Government of Haiti and involving more than 250 people from the United Nations, the World Bank, the European Union and the Inter-American Development Bank. Despite this large scale effort, the resulting PDNA failed to address gender dimensions of Haiti’s proposed strategies for reconstructing macroeconomic, social, environmental policies, as well as infrastructure and governance...read more

Water quality, a matter of children’s rights, say UN experts on World Water Day - 22 March 2010

Statement by a group UN human rights experts to mark World Water Day, 22 March 2010

GENEVA – “With an estimated 884 million people relying on unimproved drinking water sources, access to safe drinking water is clearly a human rights issue, with serious implications for children’s health, education and even personal security,” says the UN Independent Expert on water and sanitation, Catarina de Albuquerque.

Islamic clerics in Yemen oppose child bride ban -22 March 2010

Yemeni women hold up the Quran and Arabic placard reading "yes to the legal rights of the Muslim woman" as they take part in a protest outside the parliament in San'a, Sunday, March 21, 2010.

Yemeni women hold up the Quran and Arabic placard reading "yes to the legal rights of the Muslim woman" as they take part in a protest outside the parliament in San'a, Sunday, March 21, 2010.

SAN’A, YEMEN — Some of Yemen's most influential Islamic leaders, including one the U.S. says mentored Osama bin Laden, have declared supporters of a ban on child brides to be apostates.... read more


I pass a poster on my way to work in London every morning that never fails to surprise me. It's large, colorful, and cheerfully exhorts us to throw away less food. Apparently, even in the current economic climate, we waste so much food every year that we need a government-led campaign, complete with website and handy food-storage tips, to remind and encourage us to waste less.. read more

Day Camp Provides Young Haitians with Respite from the Boredom of Displacement - 19 March 2010

PORT-AU-PRINCE — Every day for the past week, Emanuel Eliacin has led an operation that seems like Mission Impossible: Select a thousand 11- to 16-year-olds from camps for the displaced population, put them on 20 buses, and drive them to a day camp...read more

Eradicating arms trafficking will further peace in Central Africa, say UN officials - 19 March 2010

The efforts of Central African nations to consolidate peace and further development are being thwarted by weapons trafficking, top United Nations officials warned today, calling on Member States to do all they can to eradicate this scourge... read more

Deputy UN chief calls for more resources to help poor States meet development goals - 18 March 2010

The second-ranking official at the United Nations today called on richer countries to implement their commitments on providing finance for development to help poorer nations reach the social and economic targets known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).... read more


KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - Malaysia's religion minister on Tuesday defended Islamic laws that allow girls under 16 to marry, amid a controversy over two youngsters who were married off to middle-aged men.

The issue has flared in Malaysia after reports that two girls aged 10 and 11 were wed in the conservative northern state of Kelantan last month. They have now been removed from their husbands....read more

Thousands evacuated as cyclone hits Fiji - 15 March 2010

A powerful cyclone packing sustained winds of 175 kilometres an hour smashed into Fiji on Monday, damaging homes and crops and forcing thousands of people to flee to evacuation centres.

Cyclone Tomas was classified as a category-four cyclone - the second-most destructive on a five-point scale - the Fiji Meteorological Service (FMS) said, with gusts that wreaked havoc across the north of the country... read more

Uproar in India Over Female Lawmaker Quota - 9 March 2010

NEW DELHI — The upper house of India’s Parliament passed a bill Tuesday that would amend the Constitution to reserve one-third of the seats in India’s national and state legislatures for women, after the measure stirred two days of political chaos that could whittle the governing coalition’s majority to a dangerously thin margin....read more

International: Negotiating Bliss in Muslim Marriage Contracts - 9 March 2010

The bliss of an egalitarian and just relationship between spouses cannot be achieved through a sheet of paper. But Cassandra Balchin writes that in Muslim contexts efforts to take a fresh look at marriage contracts is certainly a step towards this goal: Many have heard about Afghanistan’s Shia Personal Status Law which last year looked like granting husbands total obedience from their wives, in effect even permitting marital rape. Yet few have heard about the bold new Muslim marriage contract endorsed by the country’s Supreme Court. A contract that means Afghanistan’s women can demand far more than the right not to have to give their husbands sex...read more

International: Negotiating Bliss in Muslim Marriage Contracts - 9th March 2010

The bliss of an egalitarian and just relationship between spouses cannot be achieved through a sheet of paper. But Cassandra Balchin writes that in Muslim contexts efforts to take a fresh look at marriage contracts is certainly a step towards this goal: Many have heard about Afghanistan’s Shia Personal Status Law which last year looked like granting husbands total obedience from their wives, in effect even permitting marital rape. Yet few have heard about the bold new Muslim marriage contract endorsed by the country’s Supreme Court. A contract that means Afghanistan’s women can demand far more than the right not to have to give their husbands sex...read more

Women's Rights Are Human Rights - 8th March, 2010

WASHINGTON - March 8 - Monday, March 8th marks International Women's Day, and the 15th anniversary of the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women, held in Beijing. 189 countries signed on to a Beijing Platform for Action, pledging to work towards the advancement of women and the achievement of gender equality. ...read more

New report: Asia-Pacific has one of the world's worst gender gaps - 8th March, 2010

New Delhi ― While Asia and the Pacific can take pride in the region’s vibrant economic transformation in recent decades, this has not translated into progress on gender equality.... read more

Appeals for calm after Nigeria sectarian slaughter - 8th March, 2010

Jos, Nigeria - crisis

AFP – A woman reflects as women and children, killed during religious clashes in central Nigeria, are buried …

JOS, Nigeria (AFP) – Nigerian troops were patrolling villages near the northern city of Jos Tuesday after the massacre of more than 500 Christians there that sparked international shock and outrage.

But survivors of the latest wave of inter-ethnic violence, in which women and children were hacked to death or burned alive in their homes, denounced the authorities for having failed to intervene in time...read more

63 die, dozens injured in Indian temple stampede - 4th March 2010

india temple stampede

KUNDA, India – A stampede among thousands of poor villagers scrambling for free food and clothes at a commemorative event killed 63 people Thursday at a Hindu temple in northern India and injured dozens of others.

Nearly all the victims were women and children. The stampede was so intense it knocked down a gate at the compound surrounding the temple in the small town of Kunda, on the northern plains of Uttar Pradesh state.

"How could this happen in such a holy place?" cried Phool Chand Saroj, a 48-year-old farmer whose wife, daughter and grandmother were killed in the stampede. "If they had been more careful about letting in the crowds this would not have happened." ..read more

OHCHR-NEPAL withdrawal questioned: Deteriorating human rights situation is not conducive for withdrawal - 4th MArch, 2010

New Delhi. The Asian Centre for Human Rights (ACHR) today in a new report, The Withdrawal of OHCHR-NEPAL:Agreeing an Alibi for Violation?,  expressed deep concern over the motives behind government moves to end the mandate of the UN human rights field mission to Nepal (OHCHR-NEPAL). ACHR warned that ending the mandate risked the peace process, would contribute to an already deteriorating human rights situation and presented real threats to the protection of civil society. 

“The killing of two journalists, Arun Singhanyia on 1 March 2010 and Jamim Shah on 7 February 2010 underline that human rights situation have been measurably deteriorating in Nepal, following the improvement brought about by the end of the conflict. The central cause remains a failure to address impunity.” - stated Mr Suhas Chakma, Director of Asian Centre for Human Rights....read more

Women’s empowerment lifts obstacles to achieving development goals, Ban says - 3rd March 2010

More than a decade after world leaders agreed to eliminate all forms of discrimination against women, their empowerment remains a necessary element in attaining development targets, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said today.

“Until women and girls are liberated from poverty and injustice, all our goals – peace, security, sustainable development – stand in jeopardy,” Mr. Ban said to the Commission on the Status of Women today, as the United Nations marked International Women’s Day, which is observed annually on 8 March...read more

UN warns HIV/Aids leading cause of death in women - 3rd March 2010

HIV has become the leading cause of death and disease among women of reproductive age worldwide, the UN programme on HIV/Aids says.

At the start of a 10-day conference in New York, UNAids launched a five-year action plan addressing the gender issues which put women at risk.

One of the key issues, it says, is that up to 70% of women worldwide have been forced to have unprotected sex.... read more

Canada - Mail-Order Brides a Booming Business - March 02, 2010

Three to six months worth of e-mails, a 14-day visit to Russia, and a new wife.

That's the promise of Mark Scrivener, a Martensville, Sask., man who on Jan. 1 this year opened a Canadian branch of the Volga Girls mail-order bride service.

Though available for 10 years via the Kentucky-based head office, Scrivener is providing Canada-specific services to men looking for a wife who is a little bit more "out of the box." ..read more

Date-rape drugs' are on the rise, UN warns - 24th February 2010

So-called date-rape drugs are on the rise, according to the United Nations drug control agency's annual report.

The International Narcotics Control Board says tough measures against the best-known drug, Rohypnol, have worked.

But sexual abusers are turning to alternative substances subject to less stringent international controls. .. read more

Statement to the 54th Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women New York, USA - (SKSW Campaign) - 23rd February 2010

The Beijing Conference on Women was an extraordinary moment in the history of transnational women’s movements. Its outcome document, the Platform for Action, has become a watershed in the lives of countless women and girls all over the world for the past 15 years. The document is infused with a strong sense of optimism and remains a significant resource, placing women’s empowerment at the centre stage of global agendas towards gender equality. The adoption and implementation of the various elements of the Platform for Action continue to stand as essential reference points for ensuring more democratic, egalitarian and free societies in the future, with
gender equality and rights-based women’s empowerment as requisites for the empowerment and advancement of humanity in general. ..read more

New law will end male dominance in Saudi courts - 21st February 2010

Saudi Arabia's justice minister says his department is drafting a law that would allow female lawyers to argue legal cases in court for the first time.

Mohammed Al-Eissa told reporters on Saturday the bill will be issued in the coming days as part of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah's “plan to develop the justice system.” ... read more

Iranians Protest Bill on Rights of Women - 17th February 2010

In what appeared to be the first burst of activism in months not related to the disputed presidential election, about 1,200 Iranians signed a statement against a bill that would further curb women's rights, the feminist Web site Change for Gender Equality reported

The statement, issued Wednesday, calls for other groups to protest the bill, which would give men the right to take additional wives without having to tell the current wives under certain conditions and would impose restrictions on alimony for women. The bill was approved last month by Parliament's legal committee.... read more

Women judges barred from influential Egypt court - 15th February 2010

Female judges

CAIRO (AFP) – Judges voted on Monday to bar women from ruling in an influential court which advises Egypt's government, official media reported, in a move slammed by human rights activists .

The Council of State's association voted by an overwhelming majority against appointing women as judges in the council, Egypt 's MENA news agency said... read more

Outrage as vicar urges women to submit to husbands - 13th February 2010

A vicar has caused outrage among his congregation after urging women to "be silent" and "submit" to their husbands.

Angus MacLeay, rector of St Nicholas Church in Sevenoaks, Kent, made the comments, which some parishioners thought were more in keeping with a sermon from the dark ages than the modern Church of England, in a leaflet entitled "The Role of Women in the Local Church" ....read more

Forced recruitment of child soldiers in GOMA, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) - 12th February 2010

As the world celebrates the International Day against the use of Child Soldiers, UNICEF calls for the release of all children forcedly recruited into armed forces and groups in DRC, especially of young girls, where they are forced to be combatants, labor and sex slaves, suffering from violence and rape for months and sometimes years. Young girls are rarely released by armed forces and groups.. read more

Costa Rica elects 1st woman president in landslide - 8th Feb 2010

AP – Laura Chinchilla, New President of Costa Rica AP – Laura Chinchilla, New President of Costa Rica

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica – Costa Ricans have elected their first woman president as the ruling party candidate won in a landslide after campaigning to continue free market policies in Central America's most stable nation...Read

Turkey - Girl buried alive in honour killing - 5th Feb 2010

A 16-year-old girl was buried alive by relatives in southeast Turkey in a gruesome honour killing just because she reportedly befriended boys, the Anatolia news agency reported today.

The hole where Medine Memi was buried alive by relatives in the courtyard of their house in Adiyaman, southeastern Turkey. Picture: Reuters Source: Reuters

The hole where Medine Memi was buried alive by relatives in the courtyard of their house in Adiyaman, southeastern Turkey. Picture: Reuters Source: Reuters

Acting on a tip-off, police discovered Medine Memi's body in a sitting position with her hands tied, in a two-metre-deep hole in a chicken pen outside her house in Kahta town, Adiyaman province, 40 days after she went missing, the agency said........Read

Indonesia: Anti-Pornography Law Raises Fears for Minorities 2nd Febraury 2010

The recent arrest of six people in Indonesia over a nightclub show is raising concerns among minority groups and secularists about a new anti-pornography law. In late 2008, Indonesia's parliament passed a broad law aimed at stamping out what many politicians saw as an epidemic of pornography. Pushed by Islamic conservatives, the law outlawed anything - from books to paintings to some bodily movements - considered capable of raising feelings of lust... Read

Nigeria 2011: Sharia Council Rules Out Woman Gov - 27th Jan 2010

Members of the Kwara State branch of the Supreme Council for Shariah yesterday kicked against the purported move by the highly placed politicians in the state to impose a female as governor of the state come 2011.

In a statement issued in Ilorin by the council and signed by its state coordinator, Alhaji Tijani Edun and made available to newsmen, the council said such alleged move was against the principle of Islamic law that forbids  female leadership in Islam...read more

Women's movement mourns death of 3 Haitian leaders - 25th Jan 2010

Myriam Merlet was until recently the chief of staff of Haiti's Ministry for Gender and the Rights of Women.

(CNN) -- One returned to her Haitian roots, to give voice to women, honor their stories and shape their futures.
Another urged women to pack a courtroom in Haiti, where she succeeded in getting a guilty verdict against a man who battered his wife.

A third joined the others and helped change the law to make rape, long a political weapon in Haiti, a punishable crime. Myriam Merlet, Magalie Marcelin and Anne Marie Coriolan, founders of three of the country's most important advocacy organizations working on behalf of women and girls, are confirmed dead -- victims of last week's 7.0 earthquake....... read more on CNN

Homosexuality punishable by death - 13th Jan 2010

A proposed bill storming through Uganda 's parliament is one of the most severe pieces of anti-homosexuality legislation in the entire world! If passed, it would establish an alarming precedent that would virtually annihilate the human rights of Uganda 's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) population...... read more

WLUML Statement on charges against Imrana Jalal - 12th Jan 2010

The international solidarity network, Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML), condemns the politically-motivated charges brought against human rights lawyer, Imrana Jalal, by the Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption (FICAC) on 1 January 2010. FICAC, as with most significant government bodies since the coup, is headed by a military officer. FICAC was established to investigate and prosecute corruption, but instead has been used to also persecute persons not supportive of the military regime... read more

Sharia police arrested for ‘rape' - 12th Jan 2010

A serious blow to the credibility and morality of Sharia police in Aceh province, has occurred after several members were detained for an alleged gang rape in Langsa regency.  

Police in the regency said Tuesday they had arrested two Sharia police officers, or Wilayatul Hisbah, for reportedly raping a female detainee at the Langsa Sharia Police Station.

The Langsa Police are also hunting down another suspect who is currently on the run...... read more

IRAN - Mass Arrest of Women Activists &Journalists Continues - January 5, 2010

The wave of arrests following the protests and violence taking place on Ashura (December 27, 2009) has included over sixteen women journalists, women’s movement and civil society activists, according to The Feminist School and Change for Equality.

Among the women, activists and journalists who have been detained are Mansoureh Shojaee and Noushin Ebadi, Bahareh Hedayat and Maryam Zia, Mothers for Peace Mahin Fahimi and Zohreh Tanekaboni, Badarolssadat Mofid, Leyla Tavassoli, Nasrin Vaziri, Nilofar Hashemi Azar, Atiyeh Yousefi, Nafiseh Asghari, Mahsa Hekmat, Parisa Kakayi, Forough Mirzayie, Sara Tavsoli, and numerous others.... read more


United Nations: Landmark Meeting Denounces Rights Abuses Based on Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity - December 12, 2009

Holy See Condemns Criminalization of Homosexual Conduct

For Immediate Release:

( New York, December 11 ) – A United Nations General Assembly panel that met this week broke new ground and helped build new momentum for ending human rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity, a coalition of sponsoring nongovernmental organizations said today.

The meeting included discussion of discriminatory and draconian “anti-homosexuality legislation” currently before the Ugandan parliament, and of the role of American religious groups in promoting that bill and homophobia across Africa. In a groundbreaking move, a representative of the Holy See in the audience read a statement strongly condemning the criminalization of homosexual conduct ... read more

Ambassador Bangali deposits AU Charter on Democracy, elections - December 10, 2009

Sierra Leone’s Ambassador to the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and Permanent Representative to the African Union (AU), His Excellency Ambassador Andrew Bangali on Tuesday 7th December, 2009 deposited the Instrument of Ratification of the Convention on the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance at the Commission’s Headquarters in Addis Ababa. The ceremony took place at the Office of the AU’s Legal Counsel. The Instrument was deposited at the Commission by Ambassador Bangali after the Parliament of the Republic of Sierra Leone had ratified it. Ambassador Bangali is also accredited as Sierra Leone’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa or ECA.... read more

The League of Arab States, Karama, and UNIFEM to Commemorate   30 Years of the CEDAW Treaty to End Discrimination Against Women - December 9, 2009

CAIRO, EGYPT, December 9, 2009 –  On December 15-16, 2009, in celebration of the thirtieth anniversary of the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), Karama, together in partnership with UNIFEM and the League of Arab States, will host a Regional CEDAW Celebration for the NGOs in the Arab region to launch a retrospection on the history of CEDAW advocacy in the Arab region, as well as to form commitments for the future....... read more

Rape victim's parents charged with abuse - 21st Nov 2009

The parents of an 8-year-old Liberian girl who was allegedly sexually assaulted by four boys in July were arrested Friday on child abuse charges, according to Arizona police.

The father, 59, and mother, 47, were arrested Friday in Phoenix on seven counts of child abuse, said police spokesman Sgt. Andy Hill. Police were waiting for them at their home after the Maricopa County Attorney's Office issued the warrants....read more

Gender-test runner Semenya to keep gold medal, says South Africa - 20th Nov 2009

South African runner Caster Semenya will be allowed to keep the gold medal she won in the women's 800-meters at the World Athletics Championships in Berlin, Germany, in August, the country's sports ministry announced Thursday.

In a statement on their official Web site the ministry added that Semenya had been found innocent of any wrongdoing but the widely anticipated results of gender tests conducted would not be made public... read more

Somali woman stoned to death for adultery - 18th Nov 2009

A 20-year-old woman divorcee accused of committing adultery in Somalia has been stoned to death by Islamists in front of a crowd of about 200 people. A judge working for the militant group al-Shabab said she had had an affair with an unmarried 29-year-old man.He said she gave birth to a still-born baby and was found guilty of adultery. Her boyfriend was given 100 lashes...read more

International Solidarity Network

UN: Cultural Rights: New UN Independent Expert Takes Charge - 14th Nov 2009

Pakistani sociologist Ms. Farida Shaheed has taken office as newly appointed Independent Expert in the field of cultural rights, one of the latest areas earmarked for special monitoring by the UN Human Rights Council. My decades of work at the grassroots in promoting human rights leaves me in no doubt that the right to cultural life and cultural development is an essential and inherent right of all individuals and peoples, said Ms. Shaheed, who was appointed by the Human Rights Council in October 2009......read more

Asia Pacific : NGO Declaration on Beijing + 15 Review - 11th Nov 2009

Acknowledging and recognizing the hard work and struggles of many women who have walked with us to this point and paying tribute to those who have passed on, we, close to 700 women and girls  representing women’s movements from the Asia and Pacific Region, reaffirm the Beijing Platform for Action (BPFA) as a strategic document for women and girls empowerment, human rights, peace, human security and gender-inclusive development and as a key tool for advancing government’s commitments to the Millennium Development Goals. (MDGs).... read more

South Asia: Women's peace offensive - 30th Oct 2009

Give peace a chance’ may just be another cliché for many, but for women who have suffered the ravages of war, endless strife and other forms of conflict, joining hands to find meaningful solutions to their collective aspiration lends it a whole new meaning. "For 5,000 years women have been sitting in ‘jirgas’ (tribal councils), at least in Afghanistan. We have ‘jirgas’ all over Pakistan’s tribal areas also, and we thought why not introduce this concept?" ... read more

The United Nations launches special website for website for the 30th anniversary of CEDAW

18th December 2009 marks the 30th anniversary of the adoption of the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). A working group** of the United Nations’ Inter-Agency Network on Women and Gender Equality (IANWGE) has come together to plan a number of activities in 2009 to celebrate this important anniversary, including a special anniversary website, which they invite you to visit: www.unifem.org/cedaw30.

International: Girl Revolution - 15th Oct 2009

The world is waking up to the fact that the greatest force for global change is growing up before our very eyes. It’s a simple concept whose time has finally arrived. Study after study shows that girls—more than 600 million strong in the developing world—hold the key to their communities’ successful future when they’re schooled and mentored in leadership... read more

Malaysia: Why should we care about Kartika? - 28 Sept 2009

Founder member of AWARE, anthropologist and feminist, Vivienne Wee argues that we should all be concerned about the caning sentence passed on Madam Kartika in Pehang state. (AWARE)

How did you react when you heard in July that a woman was about to be caned in Malaysia? Did you think something like this? “What’s so bad about drinking beer? These fundamentalists are too much.” But did you think that what was to happen to Kartika had anything to do with you? No? Actually, the sentence of caning imposed on Kartika is relevant to you. Perhaps you may say, “But I’m not even Muslim. Why should I care?” Or you may say, “I am unlikely to be caned. So what does this have to do with me?” ...read more

South Sulawesi, Indonesia A Campaign against Discriminatory Regulations - 27 Sept 2009

The whipping of a 13-year-old girl by the village head of Padang village, South Sulawesi, shockingly epitomized the increasing political use of Islam to spread discriminatory regulations in parts of Indonesia. She was (wrongly) accused of being in the company of an unrelated male person –a new punishable offence. In its research process, WEMC partner Solidaritas Perempuan Anging Mammiri (SP-SPAM) found that since the launch of the “Muslim Village Project” in Padang village, local government at regency and village levels had implemented various regulations and laws that incorporated Syariah principles. Most of these regulations were aimed at controlling women’s behaviour, mobility and space. The most severe form of control is the implementation of the “whipping law” (hukum cambuk), which made whipping a punishment for women found conducting “sexual relations outside of marriage”(zina). This includes talking to an unrelated male at night. This regulation is one of the concrete manifestations of the influence of Islamic fundamentalist forces in the region. Together with other women’s groups in South Sulawesi, SPAM rallied for the repeal of the “whipping law”, arguing that it contradicted the constitution, national laws and Indonesia’s international and national commitments on women’s rights. The campaign culminated in the provincial governor issuing an edict to village leaders to stop discriminatory regulations – another step towards ending the trend of legitimizing women’s disempowerment in the name of religion.... read more

New law in Aceh makes adultery punishable by stoning - 17 Sept 2009

The Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML) international solidarity network and the Global Campaign to Stop Killing and Stoning Women (SKSW Campaign) are gravely concerned to learn of a set of regressive new laws introduced in Aceh, Indonesia on 14 September 2009. Indonesia's province of Aceh has passed a new law that imposes severe sentences for consensual extra-marital sexual relations, rape, homosexuality, alcohol consumption and gambling.......read more

For immediate release – 07 April 2009

Women Living Under Muslim Laws Demands the UN Resolution
on Combating Defamation of Religions be revoked

The Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML) international solidarity network is deeply
concerned about the United Nations Resolution on ‘Combating defamation of religions’. On
18 December 2007, the UN General Assembly adopted this resolution recommended by its
Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural), and long campaigned for by the
Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC), which has a permanent delegation to the
United Nations. In March 2009, the UN Human Rights Council once again passed the
Resolution, which urges the creation of laws in member states to prevent criticism of
religion; while it makes specific mention of Islam, the laws could be applied to all religions
and forms of belief. Members of the Human Rights Council voted 23 in favour of the
Resolution, 11 nations opposed the Resolution and 13 countries abstained.....read more


BAOBAB for Women’s Human Rights (BAOBAB) is appalled by the proposed Same Gender (Prohibition) Bill 2008, which has now passed the second reading on the floor of the National Assembly.

We are concerned that the legislative arm of the government saddled with the responsibility of making laws to promote peace, order and good governance as provided in section 4 (2) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (The 1999 Constitution) is enthralled with a questionable legislation on issues that appeals to the morality and religious sentiments of some of the Legislators. This proposed bill is without consideration of the implication and impact of the general interest of Nigerians and its budding democracy as well as human rights efforts.....read more

Civil Society Associations Group and Women Members of the Political Parties, Celebrating the International Women's Day in Khartoum


Mindful of the importance of exerting of all efforts, to enhance peace and stability in our country, we express our profound anxiety of the negative outcome resulting from the decision to halt the work of the local and international voluntary work organizations. We feel concerned and worried that this decision will lead to a gap in the health....read more

Update: Ten Women's Rights Activists Released, Two Remain in Detention
(31 March 2009) Ten of the twelve women’s rights activists detained last week as they were planning private New Year visits have been released on bail. Two of them however, Khadijeh Moghadam and Mahboubeh Karami, remain in Evin prison.
The ten activists were released after judiciary officials set bail for them in the amount of 50 million toman ($50,000) that had to be posted by a government employee as a third-party guarantee.

The authorities refused to accept bail posted by Moghadam and Karami, without explanation. Those released have to report for interrogations on Sunday, 5 April. They have been charged with “disturbing public opinion” and “disruption of public order,” and a judicial case has been initiated based on these charges.

The Campaign called on the Iranian authorities to immediately release Moghadam and Karami, noting that there is no legal justification for these detentions.

31st March, 2009 The Hague – Netherlands

Afghan Civil Society Hague Conference Recommendations.....read here

Iran: Twelve Women’s Rights Activists Arrested for Planned New Years Visit (Change for Equality)
27/03/2009 Ten of those arrested are members of the One Million Signatures Campaign. The activists were arrested on 26 March 2009, on Sohrevardi Avenue in Tehran, while meeting up to go for New Years visits of families of imprisoned social and political activists.


25/03/2009 Kenya: Five People Accused of Witchcraft Burnt to Death

All the victims were older people (80 years and above), and four of the five burnt to death were women. About 10 days ago the people in Nyamataro in Kisii were accused of "witchcraft" by a crowd that set them on fire and watched while they died.


AI Index: IOR 40/003/2009
24 March 2009

UN Special Procedures June 2009 appointments: Help the UN find five independent experts it needs

In June 2009, the President of the United Nations Human Rights Council is to appoint five independent human rights experts to serve as Special Procedures mandate-holders.

The vacancies are for the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences; the Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers; the Western member of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention; the Asian member of the Working Group on enforced and or involuntary disappearances; and the Western member of the Working Group on peoples of African Descent....read more

Cairo 19/3/2009 Press Release

Women are even deprived of their right to inheritance

A woman states that she and her children inherited a house and a piece of land from her deceased husband. She was surprised with her husband's brothers with the help of some policemen attempting to throw her and her children out of the house and ruining the plantations. They even forged a police report against her to force her to relinquish the house and the piece of land. She bled to them to leave her and her children in the house and take the land, but they wanted both. And now she is asking, who help her and her children from vagrancy?....read more


International Women’s Day: March 8 th 2009 BAOBAB for Women's Human Rights' Press Statement

Theme: “The equal sharing of responsibilities between women and men”

Press Statement

Every year March 8 th is set aside as a day to honour women’s struggles and achievements in the past years and to call attention to other areas of concerns that are critical to women’s life in particular and the society in general. BAOBAB for Women’s Human Rights (BAOBAB) is joining other groups around the world to mark the day. BAOBAB’s theme for this year is “The equal sharing of responsibilities between women and men”.

It is now a reality that so much cannot be achieved without the collective recognition and contribution of women and men to development. From time immemorial women’s effort and contribution to development has not be duly recognized and appreciated except with a mention in passing. The choice of this theme for this year is to strengthen the call for urgent actions towards the equal sharing of responsibilities and the recognition of the contributions.....read more


March 5,2009 :: Gender dimensions in reporting religious fundamentalism

calAll over the world, women liberation and empowerment has assumed a front burner in social discourses. FRIDAY OLOKOR attended a forum organized for 25 journalists in Nigeria by BAOBAB for Women’s Human Rights, a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) in Calabar, Cross River State and reports that the media, with necessary logistics, can be better used to fight against fundamentalism and violation of women’s rights....more


Campaign for the fulfilment of women’s human rights in Africa


Afghanistan - Journalist Farida Nekzad Defies Warlords to Tell Women's Stories


By Sharmeen Gangat
WeNews correspondent

Farida Nekzad says she defies the warlords who have turned her native Afghanistan into a killing field of female journalists. She faces death threats to tell the stories of Afghan women; if she didn't, she wonders, "Who would?"

Farida Nekzad

NEW YORK (WOMENSENEWS)--Farida Nekzad let the secret slip.

The vice president of the South Asia Media Commission and the managing editor of Afghanistan's sole independent news agency is pregnant and wants a baby girl.

During a visit to New York in November to accept two prestigious media awards--the Courage in Journalism Award from the International Women's Media Foundation and the International Press Freedom Award from the Committee to Protect Journalists--Nekzad told Women's eNews that she would want her daughter to be graced with a rare blessing for a woman in Afghanistan: freedom of speech.

"I want to break the silence," says Nekzad. "Whether I am dead or alive, the struggle should continue. Afghan women's voices should be heard."

Nekzad has been trying to break the silence over Afghan women's repression. Her stories speak of how Afghan women's human rights are subjected to discriminatory norms under warlords--local and regional military commanders--who have carved out their own fiefdoms and see themselves above the law in a country where corruption is the norm and a formal legal system is beyond the reach of locals.

"Warlords call themselves 'mujahedeen,'" says Nekzad, referring to their self-assumed role of a holy warrior, or mujahid. "They are not mujahedeen; they are criminals with ministerial positions" in the government of President Hamid Karzai.

Amid the continuing instability of the nation, Nekzad has written about what is happening to women under the reign of warlords, with a special focus on domestic violence against women and forced marriages.....more

BAOBAB for Women's Human Right’s 2008 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence In Commemoration of the UDHR @ 60

BAOBAB for Women’s Human Rights is joining the rest of the world to mark this year’s 16 Days of Activism against Gender based violence. This year is remarkable because it also coincides with the 60 th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. BAOBAB’s commemoration of this year’s 16 Days will be centered on the 60 th Anniversary of the UDHR. The emphasis around the UDHR 60 is important because without the practical recognition of the human rights of women, the total realization of the human rights of all is still very far from us. The period is a great medium to further reiterate the call for a world of peace free from injustice and discrimination.

Advocacy around women’s rights issues in the last 6 decades has resulted in some significant but not sufficient changes.

Very good examples include the various international instruments at the United Nations level and at the African regional level. One persistent challenge has been the non domestication of these treaties at the National level.

For this year BAOBAB is organizing the under listed activities to reinvigorate the call for the domestication of the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women by the Nigerian government as well as the implementation of all policies towards the promotion and protection of women’s human rights.

Launching of the Network of Journalist Against Violence Against Women on November 26 th

The network of Journalists against Violence against Violence Women (JAVAW) came into existence on December 8 th 2004 during a one-day workshop for journalists working in Lagos on using New Tactics to address Women’s Human Rights Issues in Nigeria. It was one of the activities carried out by BAOBAB to mark the “16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence. During the workshop, participants (mostly journalists) identified the need to utilize their professional expertise to reduce the occurrence of violence against women and young girls in Nigeria. The idea of forming the network according to the journalists was to ensure that journalists across Nigeria are actively engaged in the struggle. JAVAW identifies with BAOBAB’s vision and strategies and is set to work towards addressing issues of women’s human rights and in particular violence against women in Nigeria. BAOBAB in collaboration with the Nigerian Association of Women Journalists will on November 26 th launch the network at the National level. The sole objective of doing this is to broaden the scope of coverage of Violence against Women Issues by Nigerian Journalists and to introduce a significant change to reporting violence against women issues in Nigeria. In addition the launching will provide the space for an assessment of the Human Rights situation in the country in the eyes of the media so far.

The launching of the Network has been scheduled to take place as from 10 am at the Musa Ya ardua Centre, Abuja.

Volunteer Outreach Campaign to stop violence against women November 29 th to December 10 th

BAOBAB’s Volunteer Outreach Teams spread across Nigeria will be involved in the 16 Days of Activism in various ways all directed towards the recognition, promotion and protection of women’s human rights. Specifically there will be media campaign, walk and distribute IEC materials, participation in T.V talk shows, press interviews, sensitization workshops and enactment of plays on women’s human rights issues.

Men Defending Women’s Human Rights Defenders Walk November 29 th

Every year BAOBAB organizes a walk around selected major cities in Nigeria specifically to raise awareness on women’s human rights issues and to commemorate the internationally recognized day (November 29 th) for ‘Defending Women’s Human Rights Defenders’. It is also a period to distribute IEC materials like stickers with very powerful messages e.g. ‘Zero Tolerance to Violence against Women’ ‘Women’s Human Rights are Human Rights’

The AWID Forum 2008: The Power of Movements

From November 14-17, 2008, over 1,500 women's rights leaders and activists from around the world converged at the11th AWID International Forum to be held in Cape Town, South Africa to discuss the power of movements.

Each day, the Forum began with a plenary session that brought all the participants of the Forum together to explore key overarching questions.

Plenary 1: Women Organizing and Transforming the World

It's hard to believe that it has been three years since the 2005 AWID Forum in Bangkok - but the long-awaited 11th AWID International Forum on Women's Rights and Development began today, November 14, 2008, in Cape Town, South Africa.

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Plenary 2: Making our Movements Stronger: A Look Inside

Day two of the Forum, and today's plenary (like our feminism) was interwoven with digital stories, song and poetry, creating a comfortable space for the interesting and perhaps awkward task of looking inside our movements.

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Plenary 3: The Contexts of Our Organising

Often it is the context we work in that determines the way we organise.

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Plenary 4: The Future of Movements

How to capture our sharing, learning, insights, commitment and solidarity over these last four days? Where to from now?

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Nigeria: Young Women In Nigeria protest against Naval beating of Lady

WE ARE NOT HAPPY :: A message from some Young Women in Nigeria in reaction to the beating of Uzoma Okere.....

We learnt recently about a case where six armed naval ratings attached to a Rear Admiral went berserk in Lagos , beating up and stripping a lady identified as Uzoma Okere. This is totally unacceptable and as citizens of this country, we believe that we have a responsibility to call on other Nigerians especially the governement, law practitioners and other relevant authorities to bring these men to justice. In a country where we are committed to protecting the human rights of individuals, we cannot fold our arms and do nothing. We were not there at the scene of the incidence to stop such distaseteful act but we can still do something and even if we cannot do anything, we will speak against it. This is totally wrong.

This young lady could be any one of us, our mother, our sister, cousin, aunty or someone close to us. She id the victim today. Tommorrow we do not know who it will be. Should we continue to live in fear? Is our country not safe enough? Can we not find refuge in our justice system? I don't think any of these is true.

We as young Nigerian women are not happy with what has happened and we are saying something about it now. We are also calling on our mothers, fathers, uncles, aunties, brothers, sisters and others who have the authority and resources to punish these culprits to do so. This is the time for change in the world and we have to contribute in our own little way to creating that positive change and making the world a better and safer place for us, our mothers and daughters.

Nigerians react to naval ratings‘ assault on lady

By Chinyere Fred-Adegbulugbe, Olalekan Adetayo and Victor Sam
Published: Wednesday, 5 Nov 2008

Angry reactions on Tuesday trailed the Monday assault by armed naval ratings on a lady, Uzoma Okere, in Lagos.
All those who reacted, including human rights activists and hundreds of online readers of THE PUNCH, described the act as barbaric and called for the prosecution of the perpetrators.
The reactions came at a time when some concerned Lagosians who witnessed and recorded the dastardly act on a camcoder released its video footage to the public.
Six armed naval ratings attached to a Rear Admiral identified as Harry Arogundade, went wild on Monday on Muri Okunola Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, beating and stripping the lady naked.
According to eyewitnesses, the naval ratings hit the lady with their gun butts and beat her with horsewhips.
She was accused of not quickly giving way for the naval officer‘s convoy on her way home in her Mitsubishi Colt car.
By the time the rage ended, Okere, who was forcibly handcuffed and dragged into a private residence on the street in a humiliating assault, was left with a battered face, blood-shot eyes and bruises all over her body.
She was admitted at Kamorass Hospital on Victoria Island.
As at 6.30pm on Tuesday, 98 reactions had been posted to THE PUNCH‘s website by Nigerians (both at home and in the Diaspora) who were irked by the incident, making the news item top on the list of most read stories on the website for the day.
All of them agreed that no man, no matter his social status, had the right to infringe on another citizen‘s fundamental human right.
In her reaction, the Director, Gender Development Action, Ms. Ada Agina-Ude, described the assault on the lady as a display of raw power.
In a telephone interview with one of our correspondents, Agina-Ude called on lawyers, women and human rights activists, to rally round the lady with a view to getting justice.
She said, ”My first reaction is that what type of military personnel will beat a woman to that extent because of a traffic offence, assuming she even committed it. I don‘t understand that kind of mentality.
”She did the right thing by getting a lawyer. I plead with the lawyer to ensure that the case is pursued to the end.”
Another activist, Dr. Joe Okei-Odumakin, while describing the incident as condemnable and barbaric, said all those involved should be brought to book.
She added that it was regrettable that a Rear Admiral who should be looked up to by junior officers for direction could allow his boys to misbehave in his presence.
Also, the Deputy Director, Women Advocacy and Documentation Research Centre, Mrs. Grace Ketefe, said the naval ratings‘ action was against the dignity of a woman.
Ketefe said because of her organisation‘s belief that the perpetrators should not go unpunished; it would soon address the public and petition policy makers on the issue.
But the Nigerian Navy, on Tuesday, attributed the incident to provocation from the victim.
Addressing journalists in Abuja, the Director of Information, Nigerian Navy, Commodore David Naibada, alleged that Okere provoked one of the naval ratings when she stepped out of her car that was in front of the admiral‘s convoy and seized the horsewhip he was holding.
Naibada accused the victim of making up stories to embarrass the admiral ”who incidentally was a junior officer to her father when the duo were in the military school together

Somalia: Stoning to death of a 13-year old girl


13-year-old Aisha Ibrahim Duhulow was killed on Monday, 27 October 2008, by a group of 50 men who stoned her to death in a stadium in the southern port of Kismayu, Somalia in front of around 1,000 spectators. She was accused of adultery in breach of Islamic law but, her father and other sources told Amnesty International that she had in fact been raped by three men, and had attempted to report this rape to the al-Shabab militia who control Kismayo, and it was this act that resulted in her being accused of adultery and detained. None of men she accused of rape were arrested.

Some of the Somali journalists who had reported she was 23 have told Amnesty International that this age was based upon a judgement of her age from her physical appearance.

She was accused of adultery in breach of Islamic law but, her father and other sources told Amnesty International that she had in fact been raped by three men, and had attempted to report this rape to the al-Shabab militia who control Kismayo, and it was this act that resulted in her being accused of adultery and detained. None of men she accused of rape were arrested.

“This was not justice, nor was it an execution. This child suffered a horrendous death at the behest of the armed opposition groups who currently control Kismayo,” said David Copeman, Amnesty’s International Somalia Campaigner.

“This killing is yet another human rights abuse committed by the combatants to the conflict in Somalia, and again demonstrates the importance of international action to investigate and document such abuses, through an International Commission of Inquiry.”...read more


Congo :: October 31, 2008 || Goma, Congo --

Global Call for Action


The 10-year civil war of the Democratic Republic of Congo battle has taken a turn for the worse this week, as fighting between several warring groups rages outside the city of Goma, long a safe haven for refugees of the war. The war has killed approximately 5.4 million people since 1998, and tens of thousands of women and many children have been systematically raped by warring groups. Today, as the war closes in on Goma, fresh atrocities are occurring, including rapes of women and vulnerable children by drunk soldiers. We must act to better protect residents from further violence and denounce sexual violence used as a 'weapon' of war.

We, the undersigned, urgently urge Congolese, UN and other key parties in and outside the DRC to act urgently to PROTECT, PREVENT and RESPOND to violence and brutal rapes of women and children in the embattled area surrounding the city of Goma, and to protect civilians of North Kivu, where there one million internally displaced people (IDP).  With an estimated 20,000 refugees flooding into the area surrounding Goma, the situation there is a tinderbox, and hunger is driving the violence. The increased pitting of people against each other along ethnic lines represents a very dangerous reality. Since August, when the fighting began to escalate, mass rapes have increased – 40 a day by some estimates. We must stop the violence happening today– and tomorrow-- through our global action and voices.

Reports from Heal Africa in Goma, one of the few  humanitarian NGOs still operating in Goma which helps rape survivors, stress the urgent need for UN troops to intervene to protect civilians from violence – and this includes sexual violence. Protection is also needed to help guard humanitarian and local hospitals who operate as impartial, independent professionals helping the displaced and wounded, including survivors of sexual violence. With hunger and looting on the rise, they are being targeted.

Recently a broad coalition of Congolese women and survivors groups in eastern Congo publicly denounced rapes in the Congo and issued a global call for solidarity action, and for their voices to be heard. We have heard their voices and we stand in solidarity with them, demanding world leaders, and belligerents in the DRC conflict act immediately to stop the violence, including rapes in Congo:

These actions include:

·        Demonstrate via concrete action and public statements their recent global commitment to UN Security Council Resolution 1820on women, peace and security, that demands the "immediate and complete cessation by all parties to armed conflict of all acts of sexual violence against civilians" and affirming that "rape and other forms of sexual violence can constitute war crimes, crimes against humanity or a constitutive act with respect to genocide."

·        Deploy increased UN Peacekeepers (MONUC) to protect civilians from attack – including gang rapes of women by drunk soldiers reported in Goma. MONUC must intervene to stop rapes!

Right now, all peacekeeping bodies are making what relief workers brand a 'half-hearted' and inadequate response to violence. The MONUC troops must be actively deployed to protect civilians. This action by MONUC and the international community would directly support SR Resolution 1820 and international laws that view these war rapes  as'sexual war crimes.'

·        Deploy MONUC peacekeepers to protect displaced civilians hoping to return to their homes.

·        Provide US and UN representatives, along with Congo MONUC and State Dept African Affairs representatives,  with the mandate, authority and resources to take clear actions to help broker a durable peace in North Kivu, and to demand that key warring actors support Sec Res 1820by stopping war-rapes and atrocities against civilians, and instead, actively protect civilians from violence and rapes.

·        Create a Sexual Violence Rapid Response Unit within MONUC and create small teams at the different IDP centers that include local women to coordinate MONUC's and the humanitarian community's response to rapes, and assist raped survivors to safely access emergency medical and counseling services from HEAL Africa and frontline NGOs equipped to assist.

·        Provide immediate increase of World Food Program donations to Goma, which now has ¼ of the rations needed, based on HEAL Africa's estimates. The lack of food is causing fierce competition for available resources, and threatens the relationship of communities being forced together in close proximity. Hunger is driving violence.

·        Â Local Responses needed:

·        Implement a coordinated local emergency plan to respond to the current increase of rape that  includes:

o   Units protected by MONUC forces who can reach raped women amidst fighting

o   a central mobile telephone number for reporting rapes,

o   linking relief workers at the few intl NGOs active around Goma (MSF Belgium, IMC, Norwegian Church AID, etc.) and at IDP centers in North Kivu to key contacts and staff who have mobile and fixed medical teams to assist rape survivors.

o   Similar steps are needed in South Kivu, where Panzi Hospital coordinates responses and care for survivors of sexual violence in Bukavu. Panzi has also been targeted by violence, and needs further support.

o   Support and equip relief teams to provide armedPROTECTION and FUEL, WATER and FOOD to internees in IDP camps in North Kivu, and to provide protection against sexual violence in the camps by recruiting women and men chosen by camp leaders to receive training in post- rape counseling and medical referral for rape survivors.

o   Recruit and train local men and women from existing NGOs in Goma who have programs  and trained counselors to work in the IDP camps, and refer survivors to these  local NGOs for supportive services and shelter. Local NGOs are receiving survivors in their homes and villages and need to be directly linked to arriving emergency medical providers and camp managers.

NOTE: This petition will be sent to UN,US, Congolese and other key leaders and actors in government and civil society to demand action today to stop the violence in Congo.


Niger :: Woman wins slavery case against Niger


A West African regional court of justice convicted the state of Niger on Monday for failing to protect a 12-year-old girl from being sold into slavery in a case anti-slavery campaigners hope will set a precedent.

The regional Ecowas Court of Justice ruled that Niger had failed in its obligations to protect Hadijatou Mani, who says she was sold into slavery in 1996 for around $500 and regularly beaten and sexually abused.

"I am very happy with this decision," Mani, now 24, told reporters at the court. Her comments, in the Hausa language spoken widely in Africa's Sahel region on the southern fringe of the Sahara, were translated by an interpreter.

Mani was at one point jailed for bigamy by Niger's court system when her former master opposed her marriage to another man, insisting she had automatically become his own wife when he set her free in 2005.

The case against the state was brought with the help of British-based anti-slavery organisations as a test case to press African governments to stamp out slavery, which campaigners say is rife in some African countries despite legal

prohibitions. ......read more


Nigeria :: How immigration officials and voodoo aid human trafficking business in Nigeria

By Musikilu Mojeed

Punch on the Web

Published: Friday, 24 Oct 2008

They are supposed to be huge barriers to traffickers, but many in the anti-trafficking movement see some security agencies, embassy and airline officials as the major leak in the bid to drive the human merchants underground. click to expand image


Mrs. Victoria Robert, with some victims

Most of those contacted in the course of this investigation were unanimous that human trafficking has continued to thrive in Nigeria because of collusion between bad eggs among security, immigration, embassy and airline officials and traffickers. These officials often take bribes in exchange for facilitating smooth passage across the borders for traffickers and their victims.

A source in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs told this reporter that France and some other European countries had complained bitterly and repeatedly “that some of our immigration and border officials and airlines had been looking the other way and allowing traffickers to have their way.”

Nigeria :: Women as Change Agents in Development


Gender activists in Nigeria appear to have joined the global movement to properly position women as catalysts for development. Ahead of an international conference scheduled to hold in Abuja, this month, Olaolu Olusina examines some of the issues that are germane to the forthcomng forum

It couldn't have come at a better time and it is generally believed that the forthcoming Women in Politics and Government (WINPOGOV) Conference and Awards  2008 scheduled to hold in the Nigeria's capital, Abuja  this month, really holds a lot for Nigerian women. An initiative of the Lagos-based Alpha Institute, a non-government, non-partisan and non-profit organisation, in collaboration with the Nigerian Network of Non-Governmental Organisations(NNNGOs), it is strategically  designed to address issues that are germane to the global efforts at promoting  gender equality and empowerment of women .The overarching objective, however, is to properly  position women as catalysts for development.....