News

5/2/2014

A new Afghan law will allow men to attack their wives, children and sisters without fear of judicial punishment, undoing years of slow progress in tackling violence in a country blighted by so-called "honour" killings, forced marriage and vicious domestic abuse.

The small but significant change to Afghanistan's criminal prosecution code bans relatives of an accused person from testifying against them. Most violence against women in Afghanistan is within the family, so the law – passed by parliament but awaiting the signature of the president, Hamid Karzai – will effectively silence victims as well as most potential witnesses to their suffering.

4/2/2014

This week, Tunisia passed a truly historic constitution widely heralded as a progressive and monumental document.

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Here's just some of what these brave elected representatives agreed upon in the face of strong pressure from the more extreme factions of their parties:

  • Guaranteed equality between men and women
  • A constitutional mandate for environmental protection, only the third country in the world to do so
  • A declaration that health care is a human right, with preventative care and treatment for every citizen
  • democracy with civil laws that respects freedom of religion 
  • An established right to due process and protection from torture
3/2/2014

 In a clinic providing psychological support for victims of torture, tucked away in a side street downtown, medical doctor and human rights defender Magda Adly spoke to ANSAmed about an Egypt back under military rule and the situation of women therein.

3/2/2014

Betrothal of girls is pervasive in Afghanistan.  According to the Ministry of Public Healths Mortality Survey that was conducted in all provinces of the country in 2010, 53 percent of all women in the 25 to 49 age group were married by age 18, and 21 percent were married by age 15[2][2].  A report on Child Marriage in Southern Asia conducted by the International Center for Research on Women, Australian Aid and UNFPA states that 57 percent of Afghan girls are married before they turn 16 and 60 to 80 percent of them were forced into such unions by their families[3][3].  

3/2/2014
FRIDAY, 27 DECEMBER, 2013

A landmark consensus agreed by Islamic scholars (Ulema) regarding the waiting period for ‘half-widows’ to remarry in four years will have an unprecedented impact on the lives of Kashmir’s forgotten survivors. Decades of conflict have produced many half-widows, women whose husbands have disappeared but are not yet declared deceased. 

31/1/2014

30th January 2014

Kyrgyzstan's acting grand mufti, Maksat Hajji Toktomushev, has issued a fatwa against same-sex relations and challenged the findings of a new report by Human Rights Watch (HRW). 

29/1/2014

WLUML is delighted to announce the coming launch of the Women’s Empowerment and Leadership Development for Democratisation (WELDD) web portal.  In WELDD’s spirit of fostering the empowerment and leadership of women across borders, the portal will be an online hub for sharing information and experiences.

28/1/2014

HRW report says women's rights in Afghanistan declined during 2013 as the world loses interest in the country.

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Afghanistan’s human rights situation has regressed in key areas during 2013, increasing uncertainty about the country’s future, Human Rights Watch has said.

The 2014 deadline for the withdrawal of international armed forces and continued debate over the presence of US troops beyond 2014 have negatively affected the Afghan government's policies on human rights, HRW reported.

24/1/2014

January 24th 2014

We are pleased to announce that members of Grozny-based Women for Development have recently joined the WLUML network.  The group take a holistic approach to women rights, putting on art exhibitions, street actions, and information campaigns. 

As well as hosting seminars on pressing problems - such as domestic violence – Women for Development work to foster the artistic ambitions of young women.  The group recently showcased the work of young Chechen artists in an exhibition entitled ‘Peace through women’s eyes’.  This was a rare opportunity to give women’s take on the concept of peace and to encourage their artistic expression; a vital undertaking in a situation where political stability has been secured at the expense of women’s freedoms.

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24/1/2014

24th January 2014

The Moroccan government has said it plans to change a law that allows rapists to avoid charges if they marry their victims.

The move comes nearly a year after 16-year-old girl committed suicide after being forced to marry her alleged rapist.

Women's rights activists on Tuesday welcomed Justice Minister Mustapha Ramid's announcement, but said it was only a first step in reforming a penal code that does not do enough to stop violence against women in this North African kingdom.

A paragraph in Article 475 of the penal code allows those convicted of "corruption" or "kidnapping" of a minor to go free if they marry their victim and the practice has been encouraged by judges to spare family shame.

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The suicicde of a teenager forced to marry her alleged rapist triggered protests and calls for legal reform [AP]