Feb 282007


From The Organisation for Women’s Liberation-Iran:
No to women’s oppression

8th March is a day against women’s oppression. On this day, people through out the world have protested and shown their hatred of gender discrimination, violence and inequality. They have achieved gains too. However, women every where still suffer inequality. In parts of the world women are denied their basic rights and live under medieval, religious,
backward and reactionary laws and values. This is why women all over the world gather on this day to claim their rights and declare that the world is not free unless women are free.

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 February 28, 2007  Posted by on February 28, 2007 Comments Off on International Women’s Day: A call to action in Iran
Feb 282007
FEBRUARY 27, 2007
10:39 AM

Human Rights Watch

Iran: Women on Trial for Peaceful Demonstration
Activists Arrested for Protesting Discriminatory Laws
NEW YORK – February 27 – The Iranian Judiciary should immediately end its prosecution of several women’s rights advocates for exercising their right to freedom of peaceful assembly, Human Rights Watch said today.

On March 4, the Judiciary will hold a trial for five women charged with “acting against national security by participating in an illegal gathering.? The women on trial are: Nusheen Ahmadi Khorasani; Parvin Ardalan; Sussan Tahmasebi; Shahla Entesari; and Fariba Davoodi Mohajer. In addition, the Judiciary has charged at least four other activists, Alieh Eghdamdoost, Bahareh Hedayat, Delaram Ali and Azadeh Forghani, with the same offense but has not set their court date.

“Iran is prosecuting women for peacefully protesting laws that discriminate against them – and that violates Iranian and international law,? said Sarah Leah Whitson, director of the Middle East and North Africa division at Human Rights Watch.
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 February 28, 2007  Posted by on February 28, 2007 Comments Off on Atrocities: Women in Iran on trial for demonstrating peacefully
Feb 272007

Kudos to the folks at The Historic State Theater Complex in Elizabethtown, KY for not backing down when one of their board members objected to putting the name of a play being performed at the theater on the marquee. The name of the play? Yes you guessed it, “The Vagina Monologues” and no it wasn’t the word Monologue that caused the problem.

Board member Jim Roberts resigned, telling the News-Enterprise of Elizabethtown that, “I objected to the V-word on he marquee. I consider it vulgar and in bad taste.” The title of Eve Ensler’s play remained on the marquee.  Perhaps a production of the Spleen Dialogues would have been more to his taste.  We hope that Mr. Roberts got a call from his mama reminding him of just how he got here.

 February 27, 2007  Posted by on February 27, 2007 Comments Off on It isn’t “vagina” that is obscene…
Feb 262007

Despite Dubya’s fantasy liberation of women in Afghanistan, a new report illustrates how truly delusional that  story line is.  According to IRIN,

“Every 28 minutes a woman dies in Afghanistan during childbirth. 54 percent of Afghan children are born stunted. The fertility rate in Afghanistan is the world’s second highest at 7.5 children per woman, according to UNDP’s 2006 Human Development Report.”

With 6,500 maternal deaths per every 100,000 live births, Badakshan province has the highest maternal mortality rate in the world and Afghanistan as a whole has the 2nd highest maternal mortality rate of any country, second only to Sierra Leone., according to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

According to the report, “Many of the locals said the women gave birth by the river bank during the summer and in the animal sheds during the winter.”  Local officials say that hospitals and clinics are not enough, doctors and midwives are desperately needed as well.

 February 26, 2007  Posted by on February 26, 2007 Comments Off on Atrocities: Maternal Healthcare in Afghanistan
Feb 232007

The following is a statement by Yanar Mohammed, President of the Organization for Women’s Freedom in Iraq (OWFI).  As she eloquently points out and as Yifat Susskind said as well in the Madre statement posted earlier today, there is nothing new about rape in Iraq or for that matter in any military conflict.  Rape is and always has been a defacto, systemic, weapon of war.

“About the rape of Sabrine in Iraq

Misogynist Parties Exploiting Women’s Sufferings
For their Political Purposes

by Yanar Mohammed

The Iraqi society was shocked with an unprecedented issue of a woman stepping forward voluntarily and admitting to have been sexually assaulted by Iraqi security forces. Instead of pursuing further investigation into this assault allegation, or empowering the victim with moral support, the opponent Islamist sectarian factions competed to exploit the matter politically preparing the ground for bloody sectarian conflict. They symbolized Sabrine’s rape as an assault against the whole Sunni religious group.

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 February 23, 2007  Posted by on February 23, 2007 Comments Off on Yanar Mohammed: About the rape of Sabrine in Iraq