16 Days Campaign; Gender-based Violence; Militarization

My name is Rana Hadi and I am 24 years old.  I am in my fourth year of study at the Science College in Baghdad. I have always known that a human being has only one life. Yet I have had two, and I will share them with you.

My first life

أم الشهيد".... مازلت أتحسس مكان نومك، لازالت أسمع صوتك المتقطع تأتي قافزا درجات السلم مسرعا "الغدا يا ماما بسرعة عايز ألحق مشواري"، شايفاك وانت بتتخرج، وانتا بتتجوز، لسه ملمس صوابعك على خدي وانت بترضع.


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Mother of the martyr. I still feel the place where you used to sleep, I still hear your voice rising as you skip up the stairs quickly, "I need to have lunch quickly before I go out again,” I still feel your little fingers on my cheek…

This International Women Human Rights Defenders Day, we would like to celebrate the brave women of Bahrain, who combat all social and cultural barriers to defend their equal rights and work to achieve social justice and freedom. Bahraini WHRD impart valuable lessons in determination and resistance to their sisters worldwide.

Where does one begin when talking about Bahrain’s courageous women? It is difficult to decide where to start, and what to tell.

“I shall raise my voice. If I didn’t do it, who would?”

Malala Yousafzai

The children and women of Nuba Mountains are very tired. I call to the international community to stop the bombing and the war in Nuba Mountains now!”

Jalila Khamis, Nuba woman activist, June 2011


Justice for Iran promotes and defends women’s rights in Iran and challenges impunity for sexual violence against women by the Iranian regime. Established in 2010 by the human rights lawyer and women’s rights activist Shadi Sadr, the organization works to raise public awareness and demand accountability for egregious women’s rights violations committed by the Iranian government.

WLUML-ICO team recently had the opportunity to meet with Samira Ibrahim, a brave young Egyptian activist. Our conversation with Samira was inspirational. She opened up about her background - where it all began - and about her exciting current work. Samira also spoke to us about the many forms of state violence that she has faced along the way.

According to a 2005 World Health Organization study, at least one in three women worldwide will be beaten, raped, or abused in her lifetime. The eradication of all forms of gender-based violence is integral to the struggle to achieve social justice and gender-equality. Violence against women permeates through every boundary, from the private to the public.

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