International

In the summer issue of the WLUML newsletter, Fatou Sow asks: “To ban or not to ban the burqa?” – that is a question in the European Union; Belgium and France banned it lately, so the debate continues at a high political level amongst many other member states, provoking contradictory responses across the world. Meanwhile in Iran, a year after the disputed elections of 2009, the women’s movement faces growing suppression from the authorities. We feature an article by Leila Mouri, which examines the impact of the government crackdown on the status of women and their activism in Iran today.

Dans ce numéro, nous sommes heureuses du lancement du programme « Les femmes revendiquent et redéfinissent les cultures : affirmation des droits sur le corps, le soi et les espaces publics », une entreprise menée conjointement par Femmes vivant sous lois musulmanes et l’Institut IWE, qui rassemblera des femmes du monde musulman pour leur permettre d’examiner et de débattre de la façon dont les systèmes culturels, traditionnels et religieux sont utilisés comme instruments de légitimation de l’oppression qu’elles subissent.

The Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML) international solidarity network expresses its solidarity with Gita Sahgal, a longstanding ally of the network who is active in various organisations, collectives, and movements committed to upholding universal human rights. WLUML has learned that she has repeatedly raised internal inquiries into Amnesty International’s association with the organisation Cageprisoners, headed by Moazzam Begg, around the Counter Terror with Justice Campaign. On 7 February 2010, Sahgal was suspended from her position as Head of the Gender Unit at Amnesty International. You can take action by signing the Global Petition in support of Gita Sahgal which now has over 1,800 signatories.

The Global Campaign to Stop Killing and Stoning Women is pleased to announce the publication of their first Policy Briefing Series on culturally-justified violence against women (CVAW). Launched on March 3rd, 2010 at their panel discussion at the 54th UN Commission on the Status of Women, the Series is a valuable resource for those working on issues of CVAW.

The WLUML Newsletter has a new look! Introducing a more contemporary design and reader-friendly format, the Spring 2010 issue has all the same sections as Newsletter 8: Editorial and Solidarity; Campaigns; Women’s Empowerment and Activism; News from Networkers; Reviews; Events and Announcements. On this issue's cover are the objectives and strategies of the 4th WLUML Feminist Leadership Institute that took place in Dakar, Senegal, from 09-20 November, 2009 and on page 5 we hear from one of its participants, May El Sallab.

This essay argues that CEDAW’s concept of equality is what is needed to end discrimination against women. It first traces the background of the controversy over the use of the terms equity and equality in international human rights law. Finally, to further demonstrate the importance of CEDAW’s principles of equality, and particularly that of substantive equality, it provides some illustrations of the positive impact these principles have had on domestic gender jurisprudence.

The forms of violence referred to as “harmful cultural or traditional practices” have been addressed by the United Nations for many years. These forms of violence include female genital mutilation, female infanticide and prenatal sex selection, child marriage, forced marriage, dowry-related violence, acid attacks, so-called “honour” crimes, and maltreatment of widows.

This Inter Press Service (IPS) Africa handbook brings together the available expertise and data based on the growing body of knowledge worldwide to help us understand why gender based violence takes place and its profound and far reaching consequences on women, families and societies.

In her book, Rana Husseini recounts how she broke the silence around ‘honour’ killings in Jordan in the early 1990s, starting a national campaign to reform related laws, and laying the foundation for simultaneous international campaigns against VAW. A sample chapter is attached, courtesy of publishers, One World Publications.

يشكل هذا الدليل الذي يحمل عنوان، المطالبة بالحقوق، مطالبة بالعدالة: دليل حول المدافعات عن حقوق الإنسان، مبادرة للإشادة بالإسهام القيم للمدافعات عن حقوق الإنسان في تعزيز حقوق الإنسان وحمايتها، ولتخويلهن أكثر في أداء دورهن كمدافعات. وهو يؤسس على الإنجازات التي حققتها المدافعات عن حقوق الإنسان، بما فيها تلك التي تحققت في إطار الحملة الدولية الخاصة بالمدافعات عن حقوق الإنسان التي دامت ثلاث سنوات.

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