Saudi Arabia: Call for Family Courts
16 August 2011 - Family courts should be set up in the Kingdom and couples undergo pre-marital counseling to help counter increasing instances of domestic violence and help save marriages. This has been proposed by Dr. Waleed Al-Sadoon, an adviser at the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Endowments, Call (Dawah) and Guidance. “This will help curtail family violence cases that have spread in our society.”
Dr. Farouk Musa: Feminism, gender equality and the Qur'an
There have been numerous tafsirs throughout the ages, but few stressed on the gender equity issues as propounded by the Qur’an. Many exegetes failed to distance themselves from the misogynist views prevalent in their society while endeavoring to interpret God’s words. Their exegeses are so deeply embedded in the minds of the Muslims nowadays and considered to be the ultimate truth that any other forms of interpretation are considered non-conformist or worse, heretical.
It has to be understood that all the previous exegetes approached the Qur’an with their reason, explaining the purport of each Qur’anic statement in the light of their knowledge of the Arabic language and the traditions of the Prophet apart from the knowledge they acquired historically and culturally.
Canada/USA: Investigation of Cross-Border Underage Polygamous Marriages
VANCOUVER — The RCMP is preparing to head to Texas to look for more than two dozen brides from Bountiful, B.C., who were allegedly sent across the border as teens to marry older men, including a polygamous leader now facing a life sentence for sexually assaulting two teenage girls.
The Mounties launched a new criminal investigation into Bountiful earlier this year after a constitutional case examining Canada's anti-polygamy law heard allegations of cross-border marriages in the 1990s and early 2000s.
B.C. Supreme Court heard that more than two dozen girls were sent to the United States to marry older men, while several American girls were married to Canadians.
Pakistan: No Tribal Justice for Women
MULTAN, Pakistan, Aug 9, (Reuters) - On April 14, two men entered Asma Firdous' home, cut off six of her fingers, slashed her arms and lips and then sliced off her nose. Before leaving the house, the men locked their 28-year-old victim inside.
Asma, from impoverished Kohaur Junobi village in Pakistan's south, was mutilated because her husband was involved in a dispute with his relatives, and they wanted revenge.
Her fate is familiar in parts of Pakistan's remote and feudal agricultural belts, where women are often used as bargaining chips in family feuds, and where the level of violence they face is increasing in frequency and brutality.
Somalia: UN Reports of Rape of Somali Women Fleeing Famine
11 August 2011 – The United Nations official leading the fight against sexual violence in times of conflict today voiced concern over reports that women and girls fleeing famine in Somalia were being raped or abducted and forced into marriage by bandits and other armed groups as they tried to reach refugee camps in Kenya.
“During the long and perilous journey from Somalia to the camps in Kenya, women and girls are subjected to attacks, including rape, by armed militants and bandits,” said Margot Wallström, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict, in a statement.
Anti-blasphemy and defamation laws curtail free speech
Anti-blasphemy laws and defamation laws against public officials and Heads of State seriously restrict free speech.
That’s according to the , which has issued a commentary on freedom of expression.
Some countries, such as Pakistan, regard blasphemy towards holy personages or their religion, as a serious offence punishable by death.
Lebanon - Penal Code Progess on Honor Killings + Femicide Study
After decades of advocacy by the Lebanese women’s movement to abolish the provision of the so-called “honor killing” from the Lebanese law, the Lebanese Parliament voted, on the 4th of August 2011, for the removal of Article 562 from it penal code. Article 562 allowed for a person to benefit from mitigating excuses in the event that this person surprises his/her spouse, sister, or any relative in the act of adultery or unlawful copulation and proceeds to kill or injure one or both of the participants without prior intent. While this is a step forward in the acknowledgement that such crimes are not to be accepted, much remains to be done on the societal level to change the patriarchal mentality that still puts women under the guardianship of the male family members.
Australia’s Honour killings – In the end, they’re just as dead
was released from prison last Friday, after only eight years following his conviction for and burying her in a shallow grave. The details of the case reveal a textbook case of a controlling, abusive spouse who killed his wife rather than let her leave.
One reason the Ramage case has been in the news so much is that it was the last time the defence of “provocation” was used in a court case in Victoria.
Bride's Death in China Spurs Anti-Violence Bill
SHENZHEN, China (WOMENSENEWS)–When other brides would have been enjoying their honeymoons, Dong Shanshan was calling the police.
In the next 10 months, her calls became more and more desperate as her husband, Wang Guangyu, repeatedly beat her till she passed out and kidnapped her when she escaped. Her eight calls to the police did nothing. They declined to intervene in the affairs of a married couple.
NEPAL: Emerging from menstrual quarantine
MANGALSEN, 3 August 2011 (IRIN) - Every month, for one week,14-year-old Kamala Vishwarkarmas returns from school to sleep alone in a dark, windowless mud hut. She is forbidden from entering her family's house during her menstrual cycle for fear of what might happen.
“I'll stay here in the 'goth' for seven days total,” Kamala said. “Of course I feel afraid when I go inside by myself. It's so scary during the rainy season when all the snakes come.”
'Chhaupadi', Nepalese for the practice of segregating menstruating women from their houses and men, was outlawed by Nepal's supreme court in 2005.