LONDON (TrustLaw) - Here is our selection of this week’s stories on women’s rights from TrustLaw and other media.
Inter Press Service, Egypt
During the uprising that toppled Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak, women stood shoulder to shoulder with men in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, pressing the revolution’s demands for freedom, justice and dignity. But those who hoped the revolution would make them equal partners in Egypt’s future claim they may be worse off now than under Mubarak’s authoritarian rule.
African member states of the United Nations have submitted a draft resolution on ending female genital mutilation (FGM) to the U.N. General Assembly, in what campaigners have hailed as a landmark step to end a practice that has been inflicted on up to 140 million women and girls.
A ban on girls wearing the Islamic headscarf to a school in southern Russia has angered Muslims and forced President Vladimir Putin, who has robustly defended the Orthodox Church, to affirm that Russia is a secular state. Muslims in the town of Kara Tyube in the Stavropol region say the ban on the hijab at School No. 12 forces their children to choose between their religion and a state education.
The House of Commons international development committee said the UK should reconsider its ambition to build Afghan government institutions in favour of more traditional aid targets. These included in particular improving the lives of Afghan women.
Global Press Institute, Nepal
For the Nepali girls who serve as Kumari, a living goddess believed to be an incarnation of the Hindu goddess Taleju, the transition to ordinary life after they reach puberty can be terrifying and debilitating. Activists call for increased education to better prepare the young women for life in the real world.
A judge’s decision to jail a mentally ill woman for inducing an abortion in El Salvador highlights the country’s draconian abortion laws that are among the worst in Central America, a reproductive rights group says.
Global Press Institute, Haiti
In Haiti, one-third of girls older than 6 never attend school. Now, young women are starting businesses as street vendors to afford an education for themselves and their children.
The European Commission has postponed a vote on a plan to force companies to allot 40 percent of their board seats to women by 2020 as lawyers questioned its legality under EU rules. Many argue quotas are damaging rather than beneficial to women's rights because women would not be hired on their merit but as part of a box-ticking exercise.
Inter Press Service, France
When French police broke up a Nigerian human trafficking ring that allegedly forced young migrant women into prostitution, the arrests cast a sharp light on the plight of what the authorities called “modern-day slaves”. These young women form part of the estimated 1.5 million victims of human trafficking in the European Union and other developed regions, according to the International Labour Organisation, which puts the global number of victims at close to 21 million.
Inter Press Service, United Nations
When one of the Asian countries embraced Islamic Sharia law back in the 1990s, the rigidly conservative government threatened to enforce a provision that called for convicted adulterers to be stoned to death. The controversial issue, mostly with religious overtones, surfaced last week when a group of U.N. human rights experts weighed in with its own perspectives on adultery. The four-member Geneva-based group urged member states to repeal laws criminalising adultery which have resulted in punishments ranging from the imposition of fines to flogging, hanging and death by stoning.