Afghanistan: Women's Groups Secure Independence of Shelters
In Afghanistan, women's groups are claiming a rare victory. Last winter, the government was planning to bring battered women's shelters under government control.
Women's rights advocates sprang into action, complaining that the new rules would turn shelters into virtual prisons for women who had run away from home because of abuse. But after a flurry of media attention, the Afghan government agreed to re-examine the issue.
Afghanistan: Government Campaign Against Self-Immolation
The Afghan government has launched a national media campaign to address the growing problem of self-immolation. Most people who set fire to themselves, on purpose or by accident, are women. Many try to commit suicide because they are victims of domestic violence and other forms of abuse.
Listen to the BBC interview with women's rights activist Horia Mosadiq on why women are setting themselves alight here:
Afghanistan: Women in Media Reveal Risks & Challenges
KABUL (Reuters) - Farida Nekzad has faced threats of kidnapping, acid attacks and a plot to blow up her apartment since she founded her first news agency in Afghanistan seven years ago.
Members of the Taliban e-mailed some of the warnings; others arrived over the phone. One caller warned she would be murdered and disfigured so horrendously that her family would not be able to recognize her body.
In Afghanistan, Rage at Young Lovers
HERAT, Afghanistan — The two teenagers met inside an ice cream factory through darting glances before roll call, murmured hellos as supervisors looked away and, finally, a phone number folded up and tossed discreetly onto the workroom floor.
A car burned by a crowd during a riot that took place after the police rescued two teenagers from a group of men who had demanded that they be hanged or stoned for their relationship.
It was the beginning of an Afghan love story that flouted dominant traditions of arranged marriages and close family scrutiny, a romance between two teenagers of different ethnicities that tested a village’s tolerance for more modern whims of the heart. The results were delivered with brutal speed.
Afghanistan: Demanding Dignity on Kabul’s Streets, Afghan Women March Against Sexual Harassment
Holding signs that read “This street belongs to me too”; “We won’t tolerate insults anymore”; and a banner with a verse from the Koran emphasizing the wrongness of abusing women, around 30 young Afghan women and men marched in the sweltering afternoon heat to protest the rampant and often violent sexual harassment of women and girls on Kabul’s streets.
The demonstration was the in Afghanistan. Though small in size, its message was clear and, in Afghanistan’s extremely conservative public space, incendiary: street harassment is an attack on women’s right to coexist in societywith men, and it must end.
Afghanistan: Suspect in Mutilation Case Is Freed
KABUL, Afghanistan — The only suspect arrested in the case of a woman mutilated for leaving her husband has been released, local Afghan officials and the woman’s father said Monday, in a move that has angered human rights advocates and the woman’s family.
The suspect, Sulaiman, who like many Afghans has one name, was released with the knowledge of the governor in south-central Oruzgan Province, said the provincial attorney, Ghulam Farouq. Police officials had said that Mr. Sulaiman, the woman’s father-in-law, had confessed to taking part in the mutilation in 2009, though Mr. Farouq said he had recently insisted he was innocent.
Afghanistan: Making Peace With The Taliban At The Cost of Women’s Rights
Massouda Jalal is a psychiatrist and paediatrician based in Afghanistan. After the fall of in 2001, she emerged as a powerful voice of Afghan women and later contested the 2004 elections as a presidential candidate. Jalal was minister for women's affairs in the Hamid Karzai government for a brief while. As director of Jalal Foundation, she travels across to champion women's empowerment and rights. She spoke to Ashima Kaul.
Afghanistan: Authorities must look to the International Criminal Court to prosecute Taliban attacks
The Afghan government must work with the International Criminal Court to investigate those responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity in Afghanistan, Amnesty International said today, after an attack on a Kabul hotel claimed by the Taleban left at least 10 people dead.
The attack is the latest in a series of serious attacks by insurgents deliberately targeting civilians, including a car bomb attack on a hospital in Afghanistan's eastern Logar province on 25 June, which killed at least 27 people, including many women and children.
Afghanistan: Virginity-related penalties unfair for women
Virginity is not mentioned in the Afghan penal system and other laws, but hundreds of women unfairly face penalties over it.
KABUL, 26 April 2011 (IRIN) - The penalties that Afghan women suffer whenever allegations of pre-marital sex and loss of virginity emerge, including death, are extreme, discriminatory and not in the penal code, activists said.
“I saw a woman who was publically humiliated and tortured because she had allegedly lost her virginity before her wedding night,” said Suraya Subhrang, a women’s rights commissioner at the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC). Extra-judiciary penalties, she added, were prevalent and deep-rooted in the country.
Afghanistan: Tribal Elders in Khost Have Banned the Use of Girls as Reparation for Crimes and Limited the Bride-Price
Until very recently, it was common in Nadir Shah Kot to give a girl away as reparation to avenge a crime. The family of a murderer would marry off a daughter to the victim’s brother or son. It was believed, that in this way, harmony could be restored in the community.
Those who follow the tradition will be punished.
But in December last year, the tribal elders and religious leaders of Nadir Shah Kot, a district in the Eastern province of Khost, decided otherwise. They gathered to end this age-old abusive practice called baad.