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Islam, Women and Feminism ( 24 Jun 2022, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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US Supreme Court Eliminated the Constitutional Right to an Abortion: Muslim Women Say Overturning Of Decision Will Hurt Everyone

New Age Islam News Bureau

25 June 2022

• Iran Arrests 10 in Shiraz after Video Shows Teenage Girls without Hijabs Mingling With Boys

• Her Highness Sheikha Fatima of UAE Honours Outstanding Female Graduates of Higher Education Institutions

• Women Earthquake Victims Neglected For Lack Of Female Physicians in Afghanistan

• Pakistan President for Undoing Obstacles to Encourage Women Choose Diplomatic Career

• US Supreme Court Eliminated the Constitutional Right to an Abortion: Muslim Women Say Overturning Of Decision Will Hurt Everyone

• UN Body to Hold Urgent Debate on Women, Girls’ Rights in Afghanistan

• Scholar Stresses Role of Women in Religious Research Following Islamic Revolution

• Female Mountaineers Set Eyes on Becoming First Pakistani Women to Summit K2

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL:     https://newageislam.com/islam-women-feminism/us-supreme-court-abortion-constitutional-right/d/127324

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US Supreme Court Eliminated the Constitutional Right to an Abortion: Muslim Women Say Overturning Of Decision Will Hurt Everyone

 

Women stand together at an event at city hall in New York City for World Hijab Day, on 1 February 2017 (AFP)

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By Zainab Iqbal

24 June 2022

Fatima* remembers every painstaking detail as if it were yesterday.

Her parents had gone out for dinner and she stayed at home with her uncle. She was wearing purple pyjamas under her Abaya. Her T-shirt had a small hole near the collar.

She had never imagined that someone in her family could betray her. In the few hours that her parents were gone, she was raped.

Fatima soon found out she was pregnant. Without the support of her immediate family, she left home and eventually met a woman at a mosque in Connecticut that offered to help. A week later, she had an abortion.

Speaking to Middle East Eye, she says she doesn't know how she would have coped if she had been forced to keep the baby. But now, women across the US might have to face that exact reality.

On Friday, the US Supreme Court eliminated the constitutional right to an abortion. The Court overturned Roe v Wade, a 1973 landmark decision which ruled that the constitution protects a pregnant woman's right to choose to have an abortion. Now, the question of abortion legality will be decided by each state.

It's a decision that will have an impact on Americans from all walks of life.

"I would consider myself a practising Muslim. I try my best to abide by the Quran and the Sunnah [teachings of the Prophet Muhammad]. Based on my faith, I know I did the right thing. I know it was ok for me to have an abortion. Islam gave me that right," Fatima said. "But now this country doesn’t recognise these rights. What will other women like me do?"

Fatima explained that she still would have ended her pregnancy, had abortion been outlawed ten years ago. She said she was affected both physically and mentally just by knowing she was carrying a child born out of rape.

"I think what these lawmakers don’t understand is that by overturning Roe v Wade, access to safe abortion will no longer exist. The keyword is 'safe.'  Women will still get an abortion. We will find a way," she said. "Women like me who were sexually assaulted will get an abortion even if it actually kills us."

Islamophobic tropes

According to the majority of Sunni Muslim scholars, abortion is permitted for health reasons if it is carried out before 120 days. If there is an extreme danger to the mother or child, then the time period can be extended.

Asifa Quraishi-Landes, a legal scholar and professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she teaches Islamic law, says religious minorities within the US are feeling unseen. She says that women should be able to continue going to their imam or rabbi to make their own decisions rather than have to contend with state-imposed decisions.

"It is signalling that the state is aligning with one particular view within the Christian community and using the power of the state to impose that particular Christian view on everybody. And that should be a concern to any religious minority," she said.

Many have been referring to the Supreme Court's decision as being akin to "sharia". But according to Quraishi-Landes, apart from being an Islamophobic trope, the rhetoric also unnecessarily drags Muslims into the conversation over the Christian right's crackdown on LGBTQ and women's rights in America.

"The complaint is basically you're being theocratic. But instead of saying theocratic, they say: 'that's sharia', with the presumption that sharia insists that the state should impose moral religious values on everybody," she said.

"But if you look at the history of Muslims, that is actually not the case at all."

Denise Ziya Berte is the executive director of Peaceful Families Project, a non-profit organisation working toward preventing various types of abuse in Muslim families.

She explained how the overturning of Roe v Wade "makes the Christian standard of this idea of 'conception at birth' the law of the land" and that's not actually how Islamic law addresses the issue.

"The multitude of sort of issues around Roe v Wade and Muslim women, especially in the area of domestic violence, is mostly about power and control; having to follow a law that is not our law," she said.

"What domestic violence is, is a system of power and control. And when women are in most danger is when they have less power and control either socially, legally, or economically."

'I would do it again'

Kavita Mehra is the executive director for Sakhi for South Asian Women, a New York-based organisation that serves survivors of gender-based violence through direct service, advocacy, technical assistance, and community outreach.

She explained how there is a direct linkage between gender-based violence and the overturning of Roe v Wade.

"[The overturning of Roe v Wade] is essentially state-sanctioned, state-imposed, gender-based violence to women because essentially, it's preventing individuals from getting something or being able to fully utilise their bodies or have access to health care and have determination over their own bodies," she said.

"Survivors of gender-based violence have people stepping into how they control their bodies and their lives. And so this is very much pervasive. It's like a woman's body is no longer her own. It's being controlled by individuals who are inflicting some form of power onto them."

Sakhi has had many cases where survivors of domestic violence have reached out and wanted to have an abortion. In 2020, the organisation worked with 375 survivors. In 2021, the number went up to 450. Now, Mehra is expecting that number to increase even more.

"The decision to overturn Roe v Wade won't have an impact on survivors in New York City, but it will impact those across the country, especially in the 26 trigger states where Roe v Wade will be immediately overturned," she said.

There are 13 states with "trigger bans" that are designed to take effect as soon as the law is overturned, and in several other states where anti-abortion laws were blocked by the courts and now legislation will become active again.

For women like Fatima, hearing talk of abortion take over the news and politics is too much to bear. A decade after she went through her own, it doesn't get any easier.

"I pray no woman has to go through what I went through, what I am still going through. Women don't just have an abortion and go ahead with the rest of their day. It is not like that. We have an abortion and that sticks to us like glue for the rest of our lives. I didn't ask for any of this to happen to me. But I did and now I have to live with it," she said.

"Someone invaded my body and I stood up for myself, all by myself. And I would do it again with or without laws protecting me. And I can assure you that every woman would do the same."

Source: Middle East Eye

https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/roe-v-wade-us-muslim-women-say-overturning-hurts-everyone

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Iran Arrests 10 in Shiraz after Video Shows Teenage Girls without Hijabs Mingling With Boys

 

Iranian authorities have arrested 10 people in the south-central city of Shiraz, an official said, after teenage boys and girls were filmed mingling freely at a public gathering. (Screengrab)

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24 June, 2022

Iranian authorities have arrested 10 people in the south-central city of Shiraz, an official said, after teenage boys and girls were filmed mingling freely at a public gathering where girls were not wearing headscarves.

A video posted on social media on Thursday showed several teenage girls and boys mingling freely in public, with most of the girls not wearing headscarves. A hijab is mandatory for women in Iran and is considered a red line for the country’s theocratic rulers.

“Ten people have been arrested so far for organizing this event,” the semi-official Mehr news agency quoted Lotfollah Sheybani, governor of Shiraz, as saying on Thursday.

“As soon as we became aware of this issue, with the coordination of the judiciary and law enforcement, the necessary measures were taken to identify the individuals behind this event,” Sheybani said.

Since Iran’s 1979 revolution, all women have been required to cover their hair in public. Women who break the strict dress code risk being harassed and arrested by Iran’s morality police, known as Gasht-e Ershad.

Source: Al Arabiya

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2022/06/24/Iran-arrests-10-after-video-shows-teenage-girls-without-hijabs-mingling-with-boys-

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Her Highness Sheikha Fatima of UAE Honours Outstanding Female Graduates of Higher Education Institutions

 

File Photo/ Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak,

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24 Jun 2022

Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, and the “Mother of the Nation”, honoured the outstanding female graduates of UAE University (UAEU), Zayed University and the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT).

On the occasion, each graduate received a congratulatory letter from Sheikha Fatima and a financial reward.

Sheikha Fatima said the graduates were driven by a passion for excellence and hard work, enabling them to build their professional careers and engage in the country’s development process.

She also highlighted her confidence in the capacities of Emirati women and her pride in their achievements and their engagement in all areas, most notably in advanced sciences, including the launch of the Hope Probe, as well as in space sciences, the economy, the environment and food security.

She then affirmed the significant role of the UAE’s leadership, headed by President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, as well as the significant efforts of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, and Their Highnesses Supreme Council Members and Rulers of the Emirates, in improving the country’s higher education and scientific research system.

Sheikha Fatima congratulated the graduates and wished them success in their professional careers.

Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of Education, highlighted the importance of education in the process of sustainable development, pointing out the significant attention given by the UAE’s leadership to the efforts to produce skilled and qualified generations.

He then thanked Sheikha Fatima for supporting the female students of national universities.

Dr. Zaki Anwar Nusseibeh, Cultural Advisor to the UAE President, and Chancellor of the UAEU, congratulated the UAE’s leadership on the occasion of the graduation ceremony, under the patronage of Sheikha Fatima, lauding her support for women’s education and empowerment.

Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Youth and President of Zayed University, thanked Sheikha Fatima for supporting the 20th batch of graduates of Zayed University.

Dr. Abdulrahman Al Awar, Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation and President of the HCT, thanked Sheikha Fatima for her keenness to celebrate outstanding female graduates every year.

Source: Khaleej Times

https://www.khaleejtimes.com/uae/sheikha-fatima-honours-outstanding-female-graduates-of-higher-education-institutions

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Women Earthquake Victims Neglected For Lack Of Female Physicians In Afghanistan

June 25, 2022

Khost residents said that due to the lack of female physicians in the province many of the injured women have not yet been treated.

They say that in the current situation, they are facing a shortage of medical facilities in the hospitals.

“There are no female physicians. There are a number of injured women and there is no physician for them,” said a resident of Khost.

“We have suffered a lot of casualties. Women and children have been injured. We do not have a female physician,” said another resident of Khost.

Meanwhile, a number of international organizations, including Save the Children and the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA), have expressed concerns over the poor health conditions of those injured in the deadly earthquake of Khost and Paktika.

“Save the Children has grave concerns for more than 118,000 children who may have been impacted by the earthquake in Afghanistan’s south-east. We have reports of people sheltering out in the open under plastic sheets and many children are now most likely without clean drinking water, food and a safe place to sleep,” Save the Children said in a report.

“Cholera outbreaks in the aftermath of earthquakes are of particular and serious concern. Already, 500,000 cases of acute watery diarrhea have been confirmed across the country. Preparations to avoid an outbreak are underway,” UNOCHA in Afghanistan said in a statement.

This comes as some of the world’s humanitarian agencies including the World Health Organization (WHO), the Norwegian Refugee Council and many other aid agencies have said that they will provide assistance to the victims’ families of the deadly earthquake in the southeast of Afghanistan.—Tolonews

Source: Pak Observer

https://pakobserver.net/women-earthquake-victims-neglected-for-lack-of-female-physicians/

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Pakistan President For Undoing Obstacles To Encourage Women Choose Diplomatic Career

June 24, 2022

President Dr Arif Alvi Friday stressed the need to tackle the obstacles for encouraging the women to choose diplomacy as a career and provide them a conducive working environment.

The president, in his message on 1st International Day of Women in Diplomacy observed on June 24, said it was also essential to create enabling conditions to help them alleviate to higher decision-making positions.

He said such enabling conditions could be ensured by overcoming deep-rooted legacies of gender bias which still hindered the professional advancement of women.

He said the first International Day of Women in Diplomacy was aimed at celebrating the achievements of women in diplomacy, recognize and applaud their outstanding services.

The Day is also meant for making a pledge to promote the full and equal participation of women at all levels of diplomacy.

The president said it is indeed encouraging that the number of women ambassadors worldwide was increasing with the share of women ambassadors going from 16% in 2018 to an approximate 22% in 2022.

“I am happy to note that Pakistani women diplomats are and have been serving in various capacities from foreign ministers to foreign secretaries and at many Ambassadorial positions in our embassies abroad,” he remarked.

President Alvi believed that the Day would accelerate the pace to achieve sustainable development and peace and democracy in Pakistan and around the world.

“I am confident that with the right encouragement and provision of a conducive environment we will be able to further improve women’s participation and representation in diplomacy,” he added

Source: Pakistan Today

https://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2022/06/24/president-for-undoing-obstacles-to-encourage-women-choose-diplomatic-career/

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US Supreme Court Eliminated the Constitutional Right to an Abortion: Muslim Women Say Overturning Of Decision Will Hurt Everyone

By Zainab Iqbal

24 June 2022

Fatima* remembers every painstaking detail as if it were yesterday.

Her parents had gone out for dinner and she stayed at home with her uncle. She was wearing purple pyjamas under her Abaya. Her T-shirt had a small hole near the collar.

She had never imagined that someone in her family could betray her. In the few hours that her parents were gone, she was raped.

Fatima soon found out she was pregnant. Without the support of her immediate family, she left home and eventually met a woman at a mosque in Connecticut that offered to help. A week later, she had an abortion.

Speaking to Middle East Eye, she says she doesn't know how she would have coped if she had been forced to keep the baby. But now, women across the US might have to face that exact reality.

On Friday, the US Supreme Court eliminated the constitutional right to an abortion. The Court overturned Roe v Wade, a 1973 landmark decision which ruled that the constitution protects a pregnant woman's right to choose to have an abortion. Now, the question of abortion legality will be decided by each state.

It's a decision that will have an impact on Americans from all walks of life.

"I would consider myself a practising Muslim. I try my best to abide by the Quran and the Sunnah [teachings of the Prophet Muhammad]. Based on my faith, I know I did the right thing. I know it was ok for me to have an abortion. Islam gave me that right," Fatima said. "But now this country doesn’t recognise these rights. What will other women like me do?"

Fatima explained that she still would have ended her pregnancy, had abortion been outlawed ten years ago. She said she was affected both physically and mentally just by knowing she was carrying a child born out of rape.

"I think what these lawmakers don’t understand is that by overturning Roe v Wade, access to safe abortion will no longer exist. The keyword is 'safe.'  Women will still get an abortion. We will find a way," she said. "Women like me who were sexually assaulted will get an abortion even if it actually kills us."

Islamophobic tropes

According to the majority of Sunni Muslim scholars, abortion is permitted for health reasons if it is carried out before 120 days. If there is an extreme danger to the mother or child, then the time period can be extended.

Asifa Quraishi-Landes, a legal scholar and professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she teaches Islamic law, says religious minorities within the US are feeling unseen. She says that women should be able to continue going to their imam or rabbi to make their own decisions rather than have to contend with state-imposed decisions.

"It is signalling that the state is aligning with one particular view within the Christian community and using the power of the state to impose that particular Christian view on everybody. And that should be a concern to any religious minority," she said.

Many have been referring to the Supreme Court's decision as being akin to "sharia". But according to Quraishi-Landes, apart from being an Islamophobic trope, the rhetoric also unnecessarily drags Muslims into the conversation over the Christian right's crackdown on LGBTQ and women's rights in America.

"The complaint is basically you're being theocratic. But instead of saying theocratic, they say: 'that's sharia', with the presumption that sharia insists that the state should impose moral religious values on everybody," she said.

"But if you look at the history of Muslims, that is actually not the case at all."

Denise Ziya Berte is the executive director of Peaceful Families Project, a non-profit organisation working toward preventing various types of abuse in Muslim families.

She explained how the overturning of Roe v Wade "makes the Christian standard of this idea of 'conception at birth' the law of the land" and that's not actually how Islamic law addresses the issue.

"The multitude of sort of issues around Roe v Wade and Muslim women, especially in the area of domestic violence, is mostly about power and control; having to follow a law that is not our law," she said.

"What domestic violence is, is a system of power and control. And when women are in most danger is when they have less power and control either socially, legally, or economically."

'I would do it again'

Kavita Mehra is the executive director for Sakhi for South Asian Women, a New York-based organisation that serves survivors of gender-based violence through direct service, advocacy, technical assistance, and community outreach.

She explained how there is a direct linkage between gender-based violence and the overturning of Roe v Wade.

"[The overturning of Roe v Wade] is essentially state-sanctioned, state-imposed, gender-based violence to women because essentially, it's preventing individuals from getting something or being able to fully utilise their bodies or have access to health care and have determination over their own bodies," she said.

"Survivors of gender-based violence have people stepping into how they control their bodies and their lives. And so this is very much pervasive. It's like a woman's body is no longer her own. It's being controlled by individuals who are inflicting some form of power onto them."

Sakhi has had many cases where survivors of domestic violence have reached out and wanted to have an abortion. In 2020, the organisation worked with 375 survivors. In 2021, the number went up to 450. Now, Mehra is expecting that number to increase even more.

"The decision to overturn Roe v Wade won't have an impact on survivors in New York City, but it will impact those across the country, especially in the 26 trigger states where Roe v Wade will be immediately overturned," she said.

There are 13 states with "trigger bans" that are designed to take effect as soon as the law is overturned, and in several other states where anti-abortion laws were blocked by the courts and now legislation will become active again.

For women like Fatima, hearing talk of abortion take over the news and politics is too much to bear. A decade after she went through her own, it doesn't get any easier.

"I pray no woman has to go through what I went through, what I am still going through. Women don't just have an abortion and go ahead with the rest of their day. It is not like that. We have an abortion and that sticks to us like glue for the rest of our lives. I didn't ask for any of this to happen to me. But I did and now I have to live with it," she said.

"Someone invaded my body and I stood up for myself, all by myself. And I would do it again with or without laws protecting me. And I can assure you that every woman would do the same."

Source: Middle East Eye

https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/roe-v-wade-us-muslim-women-say-overturning-hurts-everyone

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UN body to hold urgent debate on women, girls’ rights in Afghanistan

24 June, 2022

The UN’s top human rights body is to hold an urgent debate next week to discuss the erosion of rights of women and girls in Afghanistan since the Taliban takeover nearly a year ago.

Human Rights Council spokesman Rolando Gomez said Friday that the Geneva-based rights body was expected hold the debate on July 1 as part of its ongoing summer session, following a request for the discussion by the European Union and France.

In a letter seeking the session, the EU and French ambassadors wrote that they were “profoundly concerned about the growing erosion of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms of women and girls by the Taliban” since their return to power last August.

They cited Taliban restrictions on schooling, employment, freedom of movement and full participation in public life, and called on the 47-member-country rights body to consider adopting a resolution on the matter.

A draft resolution would be presented “as soon as possible,” wrote EU Ambassador Lotte Knudsen and French Ambassador Jerome Bonnafont in the letter.

Source: Al Arabiya

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/world/2022/06/24/UN-body-to-hold-urgent-debate-on-women-girls-rights-in-Afghanistan

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Scholar Stresses Role of Women in Religious Research Following Islamic Revolution

June 25, 2022

This is according to Dr. Yahya Jahangiri who offered a lecture on the issue on Saturday at a conference titled “Religion, Religious Organizations, Strategies and Practices of Deradicalisation: Gender Aspect”.

After the Islamic Revolution, women played as much role in expanding religious studies as they had done during the past 14 centuries, he told IQNA while offering a summary of his speech.

According to Jahangiri, only a handful of women active in this arena could be found before the Islamic Revolution in universities and seminaries but there has been a sharp increase in this number after 1979 with the establishment of specialized institutions that train women researchers in religion.

“Today, religious research in Iran is not men-centered as both men and women are working in this field,” he added.

Organized by Russian Science Foundation and hosted by Dagestan State University, the event aims to obtain new data on the role of women in Islam, religious organizations and countering social threats, terrorism, and ideological extremism. The conference will wrap up on Sunday.

Source: IQNA

https://iqna.ir/en/news/3479442/scholar-stresses-role-of-women-in-religious-research-following-islamic-revolution

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Female mountaineers set eyes on becoming first Pakistani women to summit K2

June 25, 2022

Two female mountaineers have set their eyes on doing something which no other Pakistani woman has done so far — scaling the world’s second-highest mountain K2 at 8,611 m.

K2 is considered to be one of the most difficult peaks to scale and there are less than 10 women who have successfully summited this mountain.

This year two Pakistani women climbers – Sa-mina Baig and Naila Kiani – have set their eyes on reaching the top of K2.

Samina, who in 2013 became the first Pakistani woman to climb Everest, has already reached the K2 basecamp from Skardu and will move to Camp 1 in a day or two.

Her summit is expected to be completed by the third week of July but it will be depending on weather conditions at the mountain. She made two attempts – in 2015 and 2021 – to summit K2 but accidents and weather conditions forced her to abort her expedition then.

Naila, who now lives in Dubai with family, has also arrived in Pakistan on Thursday night and will move to Skardu on Saturday before trekking to the K2 base camp.

Kiani was the first Pakistani woman to climb 8,035m Gasherbrum II, which also made her the first-ever Pakistani woman to climb an 8,000 inside Pakistan.—Agencies

Source: Pak Observer

https://pakobserver.net/female-mountaineers-set-eyes-on-becoming-first-pakistani-women-to-summit-k2/

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URL:     https://newageislam.com/islam-women-feminism/us-supreme-court-abortion-constitutional-right/d/127324

 

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