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This page includes resources we believe are relevant to the theme of culturally-justified violence. We have included both VNC-led publications as well as those by allies. If you have a resource you think should be on this page, please contact
A Guide To Human Rights Standards & Mechanisms Relevant To Fundamentalisms
UN declarations and treaties of relevance to the protection and promotion of human rights in contexts of rising fundamentalisms.
Human Rights Declarations are non-legally binding human rights standards. Their force and legitimacy lies primarily in the fact that in adopting such declarations, member states of the UN (or other relevant human rights systems) have made a strong moral commitment to use them as blueprints for building more just societies. Therefore, while declarations are, strictly speaking, non-enforceable most governments do not wish to be censured by the international community for ignoring or actively impeding the provisions of human rights declarations.
The Situation of Human Rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran
Introduction: The present report is submitted pursuant to Human Rights Council resolution 16/9, which establishes the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the first country mandate of the Human Rights Council on the Islamic Republic of Iran since the termination in 2002 of the mandate of the former Commission on Human Rights.
"What Afghans Want"
Over a year ago on July 20, 2010 world leaders met to discuss the future of Afghanistan at the Kabul Conference. Oxfam International asked ordinary Afghans what they want to come out of the talks. In spite of intense lobbying, women were largely excluded from the conference. “…only two women beside government ministers took part in the Kabul Conference.
Secularism vs Communalism: Learning from the Ban on Full Face Covering Veil in France
Three days after the enforcement of the French law that prohibits full face covering, and after the first women law breakers have been fined, international media focus on ’protesting Muslims’, while the voices of the vast majority of presumed Muslims in France are ignored.
One has to raise issue with the absence of proper coverage by English language international media regarding the public stands taken by French citizens of migrant Muslim descent.
Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women Report to UN General Assembly 2011
Summary: This is the first written report submitted by the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences, Rashida Manjoo, to the General Assembly, pursuant to General Assembly resolution 65/187. The report provides an overview of the mandate’s work and main findings and the challenges it continues to encounter, and presents specific recommendations to address violence against women through a holistic framework based on States’ obligations to respect, protect and fulfil the human rights of women and girls.
Confronting Gender-Based Violence against Women and Girls in Chad.
UNICEF's Cheryl Uys-Allie reports on initiatives led by women to confront gender-based violence against women and girls in Chad. Watch the video below.
Iraq: Shadow Report on UN Universal Periodic Review
Stakeholder Report the UN Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Process by Karama - Feb. 2010
1. Executive Summary
1.1 Improvements since 2005
Iraq has demonstrated certain efforts to improve the human rights of women in these past four years. The quota in effect for elections of 2005 and 2009 increased women's representation in national and provincial legislative bodies to 25%, one of the highest levels in the region. Also, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in Iraq amended its Personal Status Law in 2008 to place restrictions on polygamy, created emergency shelters to provide a measure of protection to women from violence, established a Cabinet-level Committee on Violence against Women, and set up a Directorate to Follow up Violence against Women in each KRG governorate.
Mapping Violence Against Women: A Tool To Map The Prevalence Of Violence Against Women And The Interventions Addressing It
This mapping-tool supports NGO's and service providing organisations to get an overall picture of Violence Against Women (VAW) in their country / region. What is the prevelance of the various forms of VAW? What measures are being taken by governments, service providing organisations and NGOs to address VAW? Who is working on which topic, and what are the blind spots? The tool helps to collect, to structure and to evaluate relevant information.
Key Measures to End Gender-Based Discrimination and Violence Against Women in Saudi Arabia
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia signed and ratified the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW Convention) in 2000, yet maintained certain reservations, especially in regards to Article 2, stating that “In case of contradiction between any term of the Convention and the norms of Islamic law, the Kingdom is not under obligation to observe the contradictory terms of the Convention”.
Solutions to End Child Marriage: What Evidence Shows
Child marriage is increasingly recognized as a serious problem, both as a violation of girls' human rights and as a hindrance to key development outcomes. As more resources and action are committed to addressing this problem, it becomes important to examine past efforts and how well they have worked. ICRW summarizes a systematic review of child marriage prevention programs that have documented evaluations. Based on this synthesis of evaluated programs, the authors offer an analysis of the broader implications for viable solutions to child marriage.
Child Marriage Factsheet
What do we mean by Child Marriage?
Child marriage, defined as marriage before age 18, is a violation of human rights, compromising the development of girls and often resulting in early pregnancy and social isolation, with little education and poor vocational training reinforcing the gendered nature of poverty. Most child marriages are also forced marriages, where the consent of the child is not considered before the consummation of the union. While boys are affected by child marriage, the issue impacts girls in far larger numbers and with more intensity.1
World Development Report 2012: Gender Equality and Development
The state of women as development actors A view from the World Bank in its 2012 Development Report. The World Development Report 2012: Gender Equality and Development details big strides in narrowing gender gaps but shows that disparities remain in many areas. The worst disparity is the rate at which girls and women die relative to men in developing countries:
Forced Marriages - Sara's Story
The British High Commission has commissioned three short animated documentaries on the issue of Forced Marriages in Pakistan in an attempt to raise awareness of this human rights violation. Watch 'Sara's Story' below.
Intersections of Violence Against Women & Militarism
This report chronicles the key discussion points of the Strategic Conversation on Militarism and Violence Against Women, convened by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership (CWGL) at Rutgers University from June 9-11, 2011.
The meeting brought together thirty feminist activists, academics and experts from around the world to: (i) identify and explore feminist perspectives of militarism; (ii) examine the intersections between militarism and violence against women; and (iii) develop global feminist strategies to challenge militarism.
Direct link to full PDF report:
Religiosity, Christian Fundamentalism, And Intimate Partner Violence Among U.S. College Students
Student survey data show general religiosity did not correlate with violence approval, psychological aggression, or intimate partner violence, but Christian fundament
Emergency Contraception: Catholics In Favor, Bishops Opposed
While polls of Catholics show that they support access to emergency contraception both after rape and as a fallback contraceptive method, Catholic bishops around the world continue to oppose access.
Emergency contraception (EC) is a term used to describe contraceptive methods that can be used up to five days after unprotected sex to prevent pregnancy. Whether because of a broken condom, a moment of passion, a calendar miscalculation or the tragedy of rape, women frequently find themselves needing a second chance to prevent a pregnancy. EC gives women that second chance. The most widely available EC method is levonorgestrel-alone pills; this publication refers only to the levonorgestrel form of EC, sometimes referred to by its brand name, Plan B, in the United States. The Vatican opposes artificial methods of contraception, although the majority of Catholics around the world support the use of contraception.
Faith-based peacebuilding: The need for a gender perspective
On May 26, 2011, IFOR’s WPP and its partners discussed faith-based and interfaith peace building, women’s roles in this and strategies to deal with the obstacles women face in their peace work. Download their free action pack "".
Oxfam Discussion Document: Learnings and analysis about religion, culture, diversity, and development
Executive Summary: Why think about religion?
Religion is a significant force that shapes attitudes, practices, policies, and laws across the world, North or South, developed or developing, whether the state is secular or theocratic. For many people (including some development actors), religion is an essential part of their personal well-being and identity; and, as an institution, it can provide networks and services that ensure practical survival in times of economic stress and national crisis. Many religious organizations have significant resources available for service-delivery and for influencing policy advocacy. However, religion is also used to justify discrimination and conflict. To summarize, religion and religious organizations evidently need to be taken seriously in rights-based development analysis and practice.
Shadow NGO Report on Turkey’s Initial Periodic Report to the Committee on the Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
This Shadow Report aims to draw attention to the discrimination and the human rights violations that women in Turkey face, within the framework of the Initial Review for Turkey under CESCR to take place in May 2011. The following evaluation and demands are based on the shadow report submitted to the U.N. CEDAW Committee in July 2010 by 20 NGOs and 6 NGO platforms.
Under the current Government’s second term (since 2007), there has been little progress in Turkey in terms of the necessary legal and institutional reforms for gender equality.
Self-Care & Self-Defense Manual for Feminist Activists
Introduction: For many years, women’s and feminist movements have been fighting on many fronts to eliminate violence against women. This struggle has highlighted the need to develop long- and medium-term strategies to generate the cultural, economic, and social changes necessary to transform the gender configuration that sustains this type of violence.
Similarly, various actions have been implemented that, within a short period of time, aim at providing women with resources to deal with the violence they face on a daily basis. Thus, many practical solutions have been proposed to manage and prevent situations of violence. We ourselves as women activists, continue to face situations of violence on a daily basis. Often, though, we are unable to handle or prevent such acts, as we find it extremely difficult to acknowledge that we, too could be at the receiving end of this violence.
If you have a report, article, or official document you would like us to know about, write us: