women

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Indian Gov't to make honour killing heinous crime

By Nagendar Sharma, Hindustan Times

The government is set to amend the 150-year-old Indian Penal Code to define honour killing as a heinous crime by adding a new section to the criminal law, with punishment ranging from life imprisonment to even a death sentence.

The move follows the growing demands to curb the social menace of killing young girls defying their families in marriage related issues, in some north Indian states particularly Haryana, Western Uttar Pradesh and Punjab.

So far, honour killing is not a classified crime in India, and no separate data is available of such cases with the National Crime Records Bureau.

The proposal moved by Home Ministry, has been cleared by the Law Ministry and the government is likely to move a Bill in Parliament in the coming Budget session, after getting the cabinet nod.

“We have completed our preparations to put in place a strong deterrent against the pervert practice of honour killings not only against those who carry it out, but against those who abet it also,” Law Minister M. Veerappa Moily told Hindustan Times.

The government has shelved its plan to bring a fresh law to curb such killings, and has decided to amend the IPC, the law that prescribes punishment for criminal offences.

arvan's picture

Eve Ensler: Embrace your inner girl

In this passionate talk, Eve Ensler declares that there is a girl cell in us all -- a cell that we have all been taught to suppress.  She tells heartfelt stories of girls around the world who have overcome shocking adversity and violence to reveal the astonishing strength of being a girl.

 

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Peace Laureates Unite to Condemn Treatment of Shirin Ebadi and Iranian Activists

In an open letter to Iranian President Ahmadi Nejad, 14 Nobel Peace Prize Laureatescondemn Iran's intimidation of Shirin Ebadi and other Iranian activists.  The letter was signed by Wangari Maathai, Jody Williams, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, His Holiness The Dalai Lama, F.W. de Klerk, and 9 other Nobel Peace Laureates.  The letter warns Ahmadi Nejad's government that the crackdown on opposition will not end the demands for human rights.

Dr. Mahmoud Ahmadi Nejad
President, Islamic Republic of Iran
Pasteur Avenue
Tehran, Iran  13168-43311

21 January 2010

To President Ahmadi Nejad:

We are deeply distressed to learn of the recent actions taken against our sister Nobel Peace Laureate Dr. Shirin Ebadi.  We urge the Islamic Republic of Iran to immediately release all funds belonging to Dr. Ebadi and her husband and stop the harassment of Dr. Ebadi and her family.

arvan's picture

Study Finds that Many Victims of Partner Violence Experience Reproductive Coercion

Groundbreaking Study Finds that Many Victims of Partner Violence Experience Reproductive Coercion

SAN FRANCISCO - A new study sheds light on a little-recognized form of abuse in which men use coercion and birth control sabotage to cause their partners to become pregnant against their wills. The study, published in the January issue of Contraception, finds this kind of reproductive control to be especially common in relationships in which women experience physical or sexual partner violence.

“Pregnancy Coercion, Intimate Partner Violence and Unintended Pregnancy” is the first quantitative examination of the relationship between intimate partner violence, reproductive coercion and unintended pregnancy. It finds that young women and teenage girls often face efforts by male partners to sabotage their birth control or coerce or pressure them to become pregnant - including by damaging condoms and destroying contraceptives. These behaviors, defined as “reproductive coercion,” are often associated with physical or sexual violence. Conducted by researchers at the University of California Davis School of Medicine and the Harvard School of Pubic Health, the study also finds that among women who experienced both reproductive coercion and partner violence, the risk of unintended pregnancy doubled.

From August 2008 to March 2009, researchers worked at five reproductive health clinics in Northern California, querying some 1,300 English- and Spanish-speaking 16- to 29-year-old women who agreed to respond to a survey about their experiences. They were asked about birth-control sabotage, pregnancy coercion and intimate partner violence.  Approximately one in five young women said they experienced pregnancy coercion and 15 percent said they experienced birth control sabotage.  Fifty-three percent of respondents said they had experienced physical or sexual violence from an intimate partner.  Thirty-five percent of the women who reported partner violence also reported either pregnancy coercion or birth control sabotage.

arvan's picture

Peace Is Impossible When Half the Population Is Excluded from Negotiations, Say Afghanistan’s Women Activists

A day ahead of the London Conference, women’s groups make strong recommendations for reconstruction and development.

London [UNIFEM] In the lead-up to the 28 January London Conference on Afghanistan hosted by the UK Government, Afghan women human rights defenders today released strong, specific recommendations on security, development and governance priorities for their country. These recommendations provide the only concrete input from consultation with Afghan women into the key decisions affecting the future of their country that will be set in London by international actors.

Deeply concerned about the exclusion of Afghan women’s perspectives from the dialogue surrounding the London Conference, the statement issued today by the women activists comes as a result of broad-based consultations with Afghan women civil society leaders at the Dubai Women’s Dialogue and London Dialogue over the last week, involving the Afghan Women’s Network and supported by the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) and the Institute for Inclusive Security. 

"As the global community knows, nowhere are women’s human rights more at stake than in Afghanistan. Therefore it is of grave concern that women’s voices and perspectives are largely missing from this London conference on Afghanistan’s future. The international community should stand behind the women of Afghanistan and elevate their voices, not barter away their rights in the name of short-term peace and stabilization,” said Wazma Frogh, Afghan Gender and Development Specialist.

arvan's picture

In the womb of controversy

[From Times of India]

CHENNAI: As high drama is being played out in Indian courts over surrogacy issues, the US consulate in Chennai, perhaps worried about the rash of litigations, has decided to tighten its visa processing norms, particularly for couples coming to the city for fertility treatment and assisted reproduction.

About a month ago, Vimala (name changed), a US citizen, returning home after delivering a healthy baby boy, was put through a grilling at the US consulate in Chennai when she went to obtain a passport for her new-born. On learning that she had conceived the child with the help of donor eggs (through assisted reproduction by transfer of eggs or oocytes donated by another woman), the consulate declined to recognise her as the biological mother.

"The father's name and mother's name are mentioned in the consular report of birth. This certificate is issued to recognise a US citizen child born outside the country. But the certificate for my son does not list me as the mother. I had to go through a lawyer to process adoption in the US and get the certificate amended to incorporate my name," Vimala said in a communication to her doctor.

arvan's picture

YOWLI 2010: Application Online Now

The Young Women’s Knowledge and Leadership Institute (YOWLI) is one of the 2 Flagship programs of African Women's Millenium Initiative (AWOMI).  The other flagship program is the African Women Empowerment Fund (WEFU). 

YOWLI was set up to enable young women and men of African descent to widen their leadership horizons enhance their knowledge base and actively engage in monitoring and fighting for social justice.  YOWLI supports innovative ideas that challenge anti human rights strategies and propel organizing for social transformation.

Download Application (MS Word)

arvan's picture

French Algerian actress attacked over feminist play

By Expatica

A 45-year-old theatre actress was doused with petrol in an attack in Paris after weeks of receiving threats over a feminist play she wrote on Algerian women.

Paris – French police believe a theatre actress who was doused with petrol in an attack in Paris last week was targeted for starring in a feminist play she wrote on Algerian women, a judicial official said Friday.

The 45-year-old born in Algeria, who goes by the name of Rayhana, said two men approached her while she was walking to the theatre on Tuesday, grabbed her from behind, slapped her across the face and poured petrol on her.

"I could smell the petrol. A flame brushed my hat and then I ran," she said.

arvan's picture

Ban lifted on Sisters in Islam book in Malaysia

By M. Mageswari (mages@thestar.com.my)

[The Star Online]

KUALA LUMPUR: The SIS Forum (Malaysia) succeeded in throwing out the Home Minister’s order banning its 215-page book, Muslim Women and the Challenges of Islamic Extremism.

High Court judge Justice Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof on Monday ruled that the book is not a threat to public order.

He said the Islamic Development Department of Malaysia’s (Jakim) objection to the book was that it could confuse Muslims, especially those who with only a superficial knowledge of their religion, as the publication explains Islamic teachings according to the writers’ own views.

“Can this disrupt public order? I think not.

“Only seven pages out of 215-page book are said to have offended the guidelines by Jakim, and those came from only two of 10 articles published in the book.

“I fail to find objective evidence to support the facts (to ban the book),” he said.

Annabelle River's picture

A Plea for Truth in Advertising

In my last post, I mentioned my ongoing admiration of The Daily Show for its consistent insight.  But there is one part of late-evening Comedy Central that frustrates me to no end, and that is the parade of commercials featuring straight men lying to women.  The men selling Twix candy bars gets women to sleep with them by denouncing books they enjoy or lying about having been burglarized; the men selling Jim Beam whiskey get women's interest with rented puppies.  The straight men in the Captain Morgan rum ad and The Hangover trailers lie to their significant others about drinking and parties, because apparently women Never Let Them Have Any Fun.

And with so many better-organized feminists campaigning against "objectification" and "exploitation," I have to explain that I'm generally not bothered by advertising that links products to sexy, scantily-clad women.  It's not clever advertising, but I like looking at sexy, scantily-clad women too.  When I go to dance clubs or the dungeon, I often intentionally dress scantily and hope that people think I look sexy.  I don't believe that finding someone physically attractive must be mutually exclusive to respecting their humanity.

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