The month of September marks one of the darkest periods in recent history when this time 25 years ago mass political executions were carried out by the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI). On the 25th anniversary of this historical tragedy, WLUML has co-nominated the Mothers of Khavaran for the 2013 United Nations Prize in the Field of Human Rights. This grassroots group with its base in Iran is largely made up of women whose children, mostly political and ideological activists, were tortured and secretly executed on mass by IRI officials.
Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML), Arry and the Nuba Women’s Group condemn the killing of hundreds of Sudanese protesters and the many more injured, as a result of arbitrary and unlawful force being used by Sudanese security forces in a wave of protests in Khartoum and several other towns in the country.
Amira Osman is awaiting trial for refusing to cover her hair. She is one of thousands of Sudanese women who are being arrested under Sudan's criminal code, sentenced, and publicly lashed.
"I am a Muslim woman but I will not cover my head, a piece of cloth should not determine my spirituality" - Amira Osman. While the anger is accumulating in Sudan and peaceful demonstrators are being injured and killed by the Sudanese regime forces, this comes as a natural result of years of injustices. Sudan has been exposed to the brutality of the dogmatic ideology of political Islam, and the people have been stripped of their dignity. The story here is just a tip of the iceberg. Sudanese women are the mirror of the cruelty and disparity imposed by the ruling regime.
Khartoum. 27th September 2013. Sudanese Human Rights Monitor (SHRM) follows with great concern the gross human rights violations that accompany the ongoing peaceful protests since 22nd September 2013, especially in Medani and Khartoum. People were protesting in different locations in Medani, Khartoum, Khartoum North and Omdurman against the government decision to cut subsidy of oil products, and consequently increase prices of fuel and food items. Police and security have dealt with these protests violently leading to killings in several cases.
The death toll of Sudanese protesters dramatically increased after the night protests and the resume of the internet services at 2:00PM. The Sudanese Doctors Union, an independent union, announced to the media that there is confirmed 110 deaths in the Khartoum hospitals alone from Wednesday, 25 September, 2013 protests. The increase in the death toll also came in result of the lack of enough medical care for injured peoples, putting in mind that Sudan has no ambulance and emergency health care system that can transfer the injured victims with the international medical protocols that protect the patients’ lives. Moreover, there is serious fear among protesters from going to hospitals, in fear from being arrested. According to witnesses the numbers of injured peoples is beyond the hospitals capacities, and there is many injured peoples couldn’t have any medical care for hours or even left public hospitals to seek private medical care, which is not available for most of the poor protesters.
Iran is reported to have freed at least 11 political prisoners, including noted human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh.The eight women and three men are said to also include the reformist politician Mohsen Aminzadeh.
June 2013 marked the handover of security from NATO to Afghan forces and US troops are preparing for their final withdrawal from Afghanistan next year after more than a decade of occupation. The growing concerns of women's and human rights groups and observers both within and outside the country over the transition process are well-documented. In the approach to the handover, there has been an escalation of violence with women and children the primary casualties. While both occupying forces and insurgents have been responsible for injury and loss of civilian life, the insurgents have been at the forefront of the most recent violence.
As in Egypt, Muslim fundamentalists in Tunisia have tried to use 2011’s opening to impose their own repressive agenda. The challenge today is to effectively counter that fundamentalist agenda in non-violent and rights-respecting ways. Democratic forces need international support to achieve that.