In many regards, Safiya Ishaq is an unremarkable 25-year-old. She is excellent at braiding hair but terrible at being on time. She studied fine arts at Khartoum University in Sudan. Not unusual for a student, Ishaq became involved with politics. She joined Girifna, a pro-democracy movement formed in 2009 on the eve of Sudan’s first multiparty elections in more than two decades aimed at mobilizing citizens to vote. Conducting mass voter registration drives, it quickly evolved into a socio-political movement demanding change in Sudan.
Earlier this month we issued an action alert to stop the stoning of Intisar Sharif Abdallah* in Sudan. We are pleased to share the news from our Sudanese sisters who report that as of 21 June 2012, Intisar was released unconditionally and without further charges. Please see SIHA's press release below.
We congratulate and celebrate the work and actions by Sudanese women’s rights activists and their supporters around the world. We also thank everyone in our networks who took part in this global action.
Violence against women demonstrators in Egypt erupted again on Tuesday when a frenzied mob of 200 men sexually assaulted a female protester in Tahrir Square. Then, during a rally on Friday to protest the incident, about 50 women and their male allies were themselves brutalized and chased away by another mob.
Security leaks have brought to light a plot to kill human rights defender Asma Jahangir - former UN Special Rapporteur for Religious Freedom and the President of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan. Jahangir has been a vocal and outspoken leader of the human rights movement in Pakistan for over 30 years and is respected both within Pakistan and the international community.
Sexual harassment is an everyday issue for women in Nepal, particularly in urban areas. Although exact numbers are unavailable, activists say the problem is on the rise and are demanding change.
“Harassment is all over Nepal against women and the problem is big. It’s more of a problem where more people live, but it really is everywhere, and it is growing,” said Pratiya Rana, 22, a university student and an organizer of the country’s recent “Walk for Respect” demonstration, the Nepali version of Toronto's SlutWalk, the international protest movement.
Women protesters and rights groups have accused Egyptian troops and prison authorities of sexual assault during the latest crackdown on demonstrations, reviving allegations they are using abuse to intimidate female detainees and protesters. The charges made on Wednesday added new tension to Egypt's presidential election campaign, just two weeks before the voting.
Egypt’s New Women Foundation said they are suing Islamist Parliament member Azza al-Garf over her pro-female genitals mutilation (FGM) statements. The women’s rights foundation sent a letter to the speaker of parliament Saad al-Katatny, informing him of legally going after Garf and asking for his permission to be allowed to take the MP to court.
Gokce, a soft-spoken 37-year-old mother of two, has lived on the run for 15 years, ever since her abusive husband tracked her down, broke down her door and shot her in the leg six times after she refused to return to him.
Survivors of sexual violence in Indonesia face an uphill battle in recovery as a result of an inadequate legal system, police inaction, and prevailing societal attitudes that tend to be suspicious of victims, say activists.