This issue features articles on the launch of the Global Campaign to Stop Killing and Stoning Women! and our Feminism in the Muslim World Third Leadership Institute. This issue features networkers' submissions from Afghanistan, Algeria, Bangladesh, Burma, India and Pakistan, as well as book and film reviews, updates on solidarity cases and more.
This issue, with an improved format, features the addition of 'Activists Reflections', which present a selection of the articles we received in response to our online Call for Submissions. Reflecting the transnational nature and philosophy of the WLUML network, the articles and reports included in this newsletter range from Growing Talibanisation in Pakistan to Expanding International Legal Protections for Victims of Gender-Based Violence in Iraqi Kurdistan and the lobbying of the Gambian Committee Against Traditional Practices.
For more than two decades, feminists have discussed the impact and mechanics of extreme right politico-religious forces and shared strategies of resistance against fundamentalisms. But, as feminists, we have yet to develop a coherent analysis of the concrete alternatives. Yet we need such an analysis in order to move beyond resistance and be more pro-active in our advocacy for an alternative vision of society.
This Occasional Paper features recent activities of one of WLUML's networking organisations based in the UK. In addition, Dr Nadje Al-Ali is an active UK networker and Sundus Abass is an active networker in Iraq. In July 2006 Act Together, Women's Action for Iraq, hosted Sundus Abass, Director of Women in Leadership Institute, Baghdad, in London for 15 days.
Discussions covered interpretation and jurisprudence, foundational myths, the process of Muslim jurisprudence relating to women in the family and women in society, and action and strategies. According to participants, the need for women to review the process of interpretation and claim their right to interpret arises out of the realities of women’s lives and the myth that there is one way of being in the Muslim world.
Many thousands in the Muslim community in Britain as well as non-British spouses of British Muslims may be in marriages or undergo divorces whose legal validity is doubtful in the eyes of the English courts and authorities such as immigration and pensions. This leaves them in a ‘married/un-married’ limbo, often referred to in legal terms as ‘limping marriages’. This publication includes articles on: British Law; Laws in Bangladesh, India and Pakistan; and European and International Law.
Over 50 women participated from 22 countries - Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Canada, Egypt, Gambia, Iran, Iraq, Israel-Palestine, Malaysia, Mali, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, Senegal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tanzania, UK, and USA. Many dozens more contributed to the PoA through regional and country-specific meetings that preceded the Senegal meeting.
The papers relate to a variety of contexts and global issues: Afghanistan, Algeria, Austria, Bangladesh, Egypt, Gambia, India, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, Palestine, Rwanda, South Africa, USA, Yugoslavia, Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender identities, multiculturalism, the Internet, as well as fundamentalisms in Catholic, Hindu and Jewish contexts.
Co-organised by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership & Women Living Under Muslim Laws the first two Feminism in the Muslim World Leadership Institutes took place in 1998 in Istanbul, Turkey and in 1999 in Lagos, Nigeria.
In July 2006, Women Living Under Muslim Laws held a week-long Plan of Action (PoA) Meeting in Dakar, Senegal. Following our last PoA Meeting (1997), this meeting aimed to update WLUML’s thematic priorities, strategies and organisational structure to ensure that they match the needs, concerns and capacities of our networkers. The resulting Plan of Action document will serve as the WLUML network’s guiding document for the next five years.