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Sudan: Darfuri Woman Refugees 'Live in Fear of Rape'


Darfuri women who have fled as refugees to Chad live in fear of being raped and as a result ostracized by their families, says a new study.

The study, based on interviews with 88 women in Farchana Camp in eastern Chad, found that 17 of the women had been raped, some more than once. Researchers said they believed another 12 women had probably suffered rape, although they were often reluctant to speak about it or were unconscious when it had happened.

The study was carried out by Physicians for Human Rights in partnership with Harvard Humanitarian Initiative. The results were published on Sunday.

“War crimes of killings, destruction of livelihoods and forced expulsion from Darfur have… left [women] in a state of perpetual vulnerability and need for the most basic elements of human survival,” the study added. Although what had happened in Darfur “persists as a terrible memory,” the women had not found safety in Chad.

Compelled to leave the camp to collect fuel so they could cook, they ran the risk of rape in doing do. “What most concerns the women interviewed… is the oppressive environment of insecurity they must endure on a daily basis,” the study said.

arvan's picture

South End gay-bashing suspect pleads guilty

From Bay Windows, the news that a man confessed to brutally attacking two men because they are gay. 


by Ethan Jacobs

Fabio Brandao’s trial was scheduled to begin May 27, but that morning he pleaded guilty to the nine charges filed against him.    (Source:Office of District Attorney Dan Conley)

Fabio Brandao, the 29-year-old Framingham pizza delivery man charged with taking part in a brutal gay-bashing in the South End last August, pleaded guilty to nine criminal charges, including four civil rights violations, on May 27 in Boston Municipal Court.

Brandao originally pleaded not guilty to all charges after his arrest in August, but changed his plea the day his trial was set to begin.

Brandao and three other men, who remain at large, attacked a group of three men and one woman, all in their mid-20s, who were walking home from the Roxy nightclub along Columbus Avenue in the early morning hours of August 24. Brandao and his friends allegedly beat two of the men in the group so severely that they sustained concussions and have no memory of the assault. Throughout the attack the assailants allegedly called the victims "fucking faggots." The attackers then fled the scene in a white Honda station wagon; one of the victims called 911 and reported the license number of the vehicle, which was registered to Brandao. Police also found Brandao’s cell phone at the scene.

After Brandao’s guilty plea, Judge Thomas Horgan handed down a two-year jail term that he suspended for two years. During that two-year period Brandao will be subject to a set of conditions recommended by Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel Conley’s office. He must pay the four victims $4250 in medical bills and other expenses by Nov. 25; he must stay away from the victims and stay out of the South End; and he must complete an anger management program and undergo a court clinic evaluation for anger management.

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Onal Found Remorse Among Turkish 'Honor' Killers

(From Women's eNews)

Journalist Ayse Onal's coverage of the Turkish men who murdered their sisters and mothers in "honor" killings finds they often feel betrayed by their families. Many killers also want to guide other men away from such crimes. The second of two parts.

Ayse Onal

ISTANBUL, Turkey (WOMENSENEWS)--In interviewing imprisoned men who have killed daughters, sisters and mothers to clear their family reputations in "honor killings," Ayse Onal often found an unexpected vulnerability, while in other men she saw a disturbing disconnect between the murderer and his emotions.

But what they all had in common, she discovered in the 2004 interviews, was a sense of having been duped by their community into their actions.

In many cases, the murdered victim's autopsy showed she was still a virgin, dispelling the rumors about her "honor" that had caused the crime in the first place. After the killing, rather than being celebrated as a hero, the murderer was often shunned by his family and community.

After Onal made a TV documentary based on these interviews with the prominent Turkish journalist Mehmet Altan, her late friend Mai Ghoussoub, the founder of Saqi publishing house, encouraged her to turn the material into a book. Since the book, "Honour Killing: Stories of Men Who Killed," came out late last year, it has been translated into 19 languages and published in countries ranging from Japan to Norway.

It has yet to find a Turkish publisher, however. Onal said that publishers--despite the record-setting TV viewership of her documentary in 2005--assume that because "this is a very ordinary issue for us," it won't sell.

arvan's picture

Rapes Soar in Eastern Congo's Culture of Impunity

Over at Women's eNews, I found this story about rampant violence upon women.  The lives of human beings are being destroyed by conflict that is fueled and sustained by the actions and inactions of developed nations and corporations.  Which companies' products are we buying that take advantage of this misery?  What politicians and government agencies in our country are knowingly allowing this to happen?  When we are shopping for something made from an illegal mine in this country, how many women are being raped?


By Dominique Soguel
WeNews correspondent

Military operations and rebel reprisals in eastern Congo have fueled a rise in sexual violence this year, but perpetrators face minimal consequences. An effort to drive out rebel groups has only contributed to the problem. The second of four stories.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WOMENSENEWS)--Advocacy groups are calling for an end to the legal culture of impunity surrounding the mass rapes in the conflict zone of eastern Congo.

Justice is an uphill battle in a region where Rwanda's 1994 genocide, which killed an estimated 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus, have left smoldering political and ethnic enmities that are shifted and stoked by brutal competition for the region's mineral resources.

North and South Kivu, two lakeside provinces, have regularly witnessed armed fighting since the breakdown of a January 2008 comprehensive peace agreement. And that fighting is routinely carried out not only by armed men, but on women's bodies as well.

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Tackling Gender Violence in Cuba

As the United States returns to embrace Cuba, we find that some things have not changed.

By Patricia Grogg

The real cause of this social problem has to do with relationships of power and control, says Clotilde Proveyer.

The real cause of this social problem has to do with relationships of power and control, says Clotilde Proveyer.

HAVANA TIMES, May 25 (IPS) - Mercedes Toyo has begun smiling again, but only after years of crying and enduring violence, though painful memories continue to haunt her. “Now I’m falling in love with a 50-year-old man who tells me that I’m very withdrawn, that I don’t pay much attention to him,” she explained in the living room of her home.

Her story is no different from those of other women who have been battered by their partners. The Cuban Constitution and numerous laws assure women’s equality and the protection of the family, but the abuse that occurs in the intimacy of the home doesn’t always escape the fear and prejudice, nor is it reported to the authorities or tabulated in statistics.

“I never thought about going to the police; it would have been worse. Plus, nobody ever does that, everything remained within the family,” said a 55-year-old professional, who also went through that painful experience in her first marriage.

Ten years earlier, Toyo did in fact go to the authorities when she felt that her husband was going to kill her.

Darklady's picture

Man Sues over Kenyan Sex Boycott Related Suffering

KENYA -- Pity the poor men of Kenya, denied sex by their women – including professional sex providers – for an entire week, all because they can’t put their sometimes violent political differences aside and work together like adults. So horrific was the week without sex that at least one man believes his brush with celibacy was a torment worthy of a lawsuit.

“Since the women called for the sex boycott,” James Kimondo, a presumably blue-balled husband complained, “my wife has denied me my conjugal rights. This has caused me anxiety and sleepless nights.”

Kimondo, who appears unaware of the anxious and sleepless nights the women of Kenya have endured while wondering when the next burst of politically motivated bloodshed will take place, is suing the leaders of G10, the coalition of women’s groups responsible for organizing the sex boycott.

“I have been suffering mental anguish, stress, backaches, lack of concentration,” Kimondo continued, suggesting that a week in his home is normally jam-packed full of sexual activity.

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