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Islam, Women and Feminism ( 23 March 2013, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Top Tunisian Salafi Preacher Says Topless Girl Needs Stoning

New Age Islam News Bureau

23 March 2013 

Photo: Indonesian men massage their wives during a mass gathering of pregnant women in Jakarta in this July 2012 file photo. (EPA Photo/Bagus Indahono)      


 Father Held for Alleged Rape of Two Daughters in West Java

 Teenage Girl Gang-Raped In Chittagong City

 Maternal Mortality on the Rise in East Kalimantan

 Maldives Failed “At Every Level” To Protect Minor Charged With Fornication

 Arab Women and the ‘Big Screen’

 Algerian Women March in White to Defend Tradition

 Ex-Women MPAs of Pakistan Feel Political Culture Not Favourable

 Three Extraordinary Egyptian Women Talk Resilience

 Social Security Minister: Sudan Committed to Women's Rights

 Welsh Women on Why They Want To Go To War

 Media Get It Wrong On SA Schoolgirls' HIV Statistics

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau





Top Tunisian Salafi Preacher Says Topless Girl Needs Stoning

Saturday, 23 March 2013

A Tunisian Salafi preacher has called for a 19-year old girl who posted her topless pictures on Facebook to be “quarantined” and stoned to death before she starts “an epidemic.”

Tunisian newspaper AssabahNews quoted Salafi preacher Alami Adel, who heads the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, saying: “According to God’s law, she deserves 80 to 100 lashes, but what she committed is worth much more than that. She deserves to be stoned to death and she must be quarantined because what she did is an epidemic.”

“She is like someone suffering from a serious and contagious illness and she must be secluded and treated,” he added.

The young Amina, who is part of a feminist movement and group called FEMEN can be seen smoking a cigarette topless with Arabic words written across her chest in black that reads in English “My body belongs to me.”

FEMEN is a Ukrainian based feminist group that gathers women together in Europe in topless protests in support of women’s rights.

Amina has been delivered by her parents to a psychiatric hospital in Tunis, according to reports received by FEMEN leader Inna Shevchenko in Paris and reported by the U.S. based magazine the Atlantic.

Tunisian media said that if Amina committed the offence in Tunisia, she could be punished by up to two years in prison and be given a fine between $60 and $600.

A petition and an international day of action on April 4 to highlight the threats against Amina have been organized by activists.

More than 10,000 people have signed the petition that called for those who threatened Amina’s life to be prosecuted.

On Thursday reports FEMEN’s Facebook account was hacked emerged. The page had reportedly been infiltrated with videos and pictures on the site being replaced by verses from the Koran.

“Thanks to God we have hacked this immoral page and the best is yet to come,” read one message signed by “al-Angour,” an apparent hacker.

FEMEN has released a statement condemning “barbarian threats of the Islamists about the necessity of reprisals against the Tunisian activist Amina.”

“We are afraid for her life and we call on women to fight for their freedom against religious atrocities” it added.

Last month, FEMEN brought together Iranian women in Sweden, who took to the streets of Stockholm demonstrating against the Hijab (Islamic headscarf).



Father Held for Alleged Rape of Two Daughters in West Java

Farouk Arnaz | March 23, 2013

Two more allegations of rape committed by fathers against their daughters came to light in Indonesia on Friday, adding to a growing list of similar crimes shocking the public this year.

One of the cases involves a 52-year-old father in Citamiang village, West Java, who was detained by police on Thursday on suspicion of raping his two daughters, aged 10 and 19.

“There are two victims. Both are the biological daughters of the perpetrator. The sexual abuse had been committed repeatedly since December 2012 by threatening [the daughters] with a machete,” West Java Police spokesman Sr. Comm. Martinus Sitompul said on Friday.

Martinus said the suspect had separated from his wife. It was not clear where the daughters lived.

The spokesman added that the suspect had confessed to the crime, and admitted to committing numerous acts of rape against his daughters since December of last year.

But Martinus added that there was evidence that the father had been assaulting his eldest daughter over a course of nine years, and in fact had conceived a child with her when she was 18 years old.

The father faces criminal charges carrying a maximum of 15 years imprisonment.

Meanwhile, South Sulawesi Police have arrested a 41-year-old man identified as E.D. on allegations he compelled his 14-year-old daughter to have sex with him in exchange for sending her to medical school when she was older.

The rape was reported by E.D.’s wife on Tuesday night, who said she witnessed the crime when the three of them were sharing the same bed.

The wife reported her husband to the women and child protection unit of the Bungo Police office in South Sulawesi.

Upon questioning, the daughter said that she had repeatedly had sex with her father, starting in January, after he said that he would pay for her medical school tuition.

The man faces 15 years in prison and a maximum fine of Rp 1 billion ($103,000).

In the past few months, Indonesia has been rocked by shocking cases of children being sexually abused.

In January, an 11-year-old girl fell into coma for six days and later died of infection. Doctors confirmed she had been sexually abused and contracted sexually transmitted diseases from her rapist.

It was later learned that the girl was raped several times by her own father.

In late February, the family of a 5-year-old boy filed a report to the police after he was allegedly sodomized by his neighbours, a police officer and a construction worker.

The boy was severely traumatized, and medical examination revealed he had been sexually abused.

Shortly after the case went public, the family had to evacuate after being intimidated by neighbours who did not believe the boy’s claim and thought the family was trying to stir up trouble.

“We have already declared 2013 as a year of national emergency over child sexual abuse. This is totally unacceptable,” said Arist Merdeka Sirait, chairman of the National Commission for Child Protection (Komnas PA), a nongovernmental organization advocating children’s issues.

Arist said there had been an escalation in the number of child sex abuse cases. In 2010, Komnas PA received 2,046 reports of violence against children, 42 percent of which were sexual.

In 2012, the figure had risen to 2,637 cases, 62 percent of them sexual abuse.

Maria Advianti, secretary of the Indonesian Commission on Child Protection (KPAI), said the most worrying part was that most rape or sexual abuses were committed by family members.

“In such cases, the probability of the victim filing a report is even lower.”



Teenage girl gang-raped in Chittagong city

  23 March 2013

A 19-year-old girl was gang-raped by a group of youths in Beri Bandh area under Pahartali Police Station of Chittagong city Wednesday evening.

She was visiting the Beri Bandh (embankment) with a male relative when they were attacked.

The attackers beat up her companion and tied him to a tree before forcing the girl into a nearby vegetable garden and raped her.

She is undergoing treatment in Chittagong Medical College Hospital.

Worker of a garment factory in Sagarika area, the girl filed a case with Pahartali Police Station against nine youths in this connection yesterday.

Police arrested two of the accused–Md Ashraful, 19, and Omar Faruk, 18, said Officer-in-Charge Abdur Rauf.



Maternal Mortality on the Rise in East Kalimantan

Tunggadewa Mattangkilang | March 23, 2013

Balikpapan, East Kalimantan. Health Minister Nafsiah Mboi has expressed concern about the high maternal mortality rate in East Kalimantan, blaming provincial authorities of not doing enough to address the issue.

“We are concerned that the maternal mortality rate in East Kalimantan was 90 per 100,000 births in 2010, but in 2011 the rate increased to 106,” she said in Balikpapan on Friday.

The figure is nearly twice the national average. The minister also cited other provinces’ success in getting their maternal mortality rates down.

The high mortality rate, she went on, was also linked to the high total fertility rate in the province, which is nearly twice the national average of 2.6.

“So in East Kalimantan, a single mother has an average of five children. This is too many. The government has a target of getting the TFR down to 2.1 in 2014,” she said.

Nafsiah said cutting the birth rate was not just about population control.

“It’s also about family and social welfare, not just in terms of economic costs, but also health and safety, particularly for mothers delivering babies,” she said.

She added that having too many children was one of the four major factors contributing to the high maternal mortality rate. The other three are underage pregnancy, a short period between pregnancies, and a lack of prenatal health care.

The minister urged the East Kalimantan administration to campaign more aggressively on fighting the province’s high fertility and maternal mortality rates, and encouraged it to improve the quality of hospitals to provide better care for mothers.

East Kalimantan Governor Awang Faroek Ishak said health care had long been one of his top priorities.

“We will boost the quality of all hospitals so they can provide the best, even world-class treatment,” he said.



Maldives failed “at every level” to protect minor charged with fornication

By Neil Merrett | March 23rd, 2013

Council heads and senior civil society figures have slammed the judiciary, state authorities and welfare groups over their systemic failure to protect a 15 year-old girl convicted of fornication and sentenced to flogging, despite her history of alleged sexual abuse dating back to 2009.

While the case has only recently received global media coverage, local councilors and woman rights groups told Minivan News that authorities failed for years to address “public uproar” over the child’s alleged abuse.

Full report at:



Arab Women and the ‘Big Screen’

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Sophie Ghaziri

In the Middle East, many women are still struggling to find their voice in society in order to obtain the respect they deserve politically, culturally and socially.

Arab women are suffocated by tradition, religion and lack of representation. Yet self-expression can take shape in many ways and some have found an outlet through a myriad of art forms.

It's no wonder that movie making with its power to reach such a wide audience is now used to bring about political and social awareness.

Full report at:



Algerian women march in white to defend tradition

 22 March 2013

Covered from head to toe in white, their faces partly masked by embroidered triangular cloths, Algerian women marched through the capital Thursday to defend their traditional Islamic dress.

"We want to sweep away these clothes which come from Saudi Arabia, black, sad and stifling under the sun, to return to our traditional 'haik' which is the pride of Algerian women," said one, posing in front of the landmark central post office in Algiers.

The procession, part of a workshop organised by art student Souad, gathered around 30 participants at the foot of the Casbah, not far from the post office, where they all cheerfully removed their veils.

Full report at:



Ex-Women MPAs Of Pakistan Feel Political Culture Not Favourable

  23 March 2013

PESHAWAR, March 21: The majority of the women elected to the last Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly on reserved seats have applied for tickets of their respective parties for the upcoming elections — but many feel the political culture is still not favourable for them.

“Almost all women, who were part of the previous provincial assembly, have applied for the party tickets for direct election. I think it is a good sign,” said Shazia Tehmas, former Pakistan People’s Party MPA, who has also applied for party ticket for the upcoming elections.

She admitted that there were problems for women politicians to be as active as men due to social and political hurdles but they still seemed optimistic.

Full report at:



Three extraordinary Egyptian women talk resilience

Ahram Online speaks to three mothers who fought against society's prejudices to provide for their children

Yasmine Wali

21 Mar 2013

Across the Arab world, 21 March marks the day for honouring mothers. Ahram Online talks with three Egyptian women who share their stories battling against the odds to secure a better future for their families.

"I dedicated my life to developing new ways to help the deaf, like my sons, communicate," Dr. Sohair Abdel Azeem, mother of five and specialist in deaf-blind disabled children    Mahalla, Gharbiya governorate.

Full report at:



Social Security Minister: Sudan Committed to Women's Rights

  23 March 2013

Khartoum - The Deputy Minister of Welfare and Social Security Adam Ibrahim has affirmed the government’s commitment to woman rights in all fields. Speaking at a forum organized by General Sudanese Women Union to mark International Women's Day under the banner of “Women in advertising and commercials”, the deputy minister called for necessity to put regulations and control on all advertisements. 

Full report at:



Welsh Women on Why They Want To Go To War

Abbie Wightwick, Western Mail

Mar 23 2013

More women are serving in the armed forces than at any other time since the Second World War. Abbie Wightwick talks to Welsh women at war about the allure of life on the frontline

When the fire fight started, Major Ami Jones heard only the whirr of helicopter blades as she swung into action helping the injured.

In Afghanistan, frontline action can happen anywhere and her training kicked in instantly – fear and panic aren’t an option when you’re commanding four medics in a life or death situation.

Full report at:



Media get it wrong on SA schoolgirls' HIV statistics

22 MAR 2013


An inaccurate figure that 28% of all schoolgirls in SA were infected with HIV has been reported as fact by a multitude of news agencies.

According to Minister of Health Aaron Motsoeldi there are no statistics available on national figures of HIV prevelance amongh young girls.

Last week the Mail & Guardian used a South African Press Association (Sapa) article on its site incorrectly stating that 28% of South Africa's schoolgirls were infected by HIV, compared with 4% of schoolboys.

Full report at: