AIMPLB executive member Khalid Rasheed Farangi Mahali. (File photo)
Sabarimala Verdict Muslim Women's Group to Move Supreme Court to Seek Entry
Into Sunni Mosques
Muslim women seek SC intervention for permission to pray in mosques
Murad: 'I was a Daesh sex slave. I tell my story because it is the best weapon
Francisco museum shows off modern Muslim women's fashion
must protect girls by ending child marriage, FGM
women found dead on Greece-Turkey border
girl tells judge about alleged gang rape, torture
director Haifaa Al Mansour on the unfair beauty standards young Arab women face
firms run by women in Jeddah
response for women fencing
champions ‘drift’ car racing for women
first female-only trampoline park set to bounce into Riyadh
lauds women’s role in improving police image
Rad disappeared after reporting in to the Intelligence Department
Veisi, 7, was raped, murdered, and buried under rubbles
is behind the plight of Iraqi women?
by New Age Islam News Bureau
Spreading Misinformation': AIMPLB Member on Row Over Entry of Women in Mosques
A day after a Kerala-based Muslim women's outfit decided to move the top court
for getting entry into Sunni mosques, AIMPLB member and Aishbagh Eidgah Imam
Khalid Rasheed Farangi Mahali on Thursday hit out at the body, clarifying that
woman are allowed in mosques. He said that some people were trying to spread
misinformation, which is not good.
allows both men and women to offer namaz in mosques. Some people are spreading
misinformation that women are prohibited from offering namaz in mosques, which
is not good. Spreading such misinformation about the basics of any religion, be
it Islam or Hinduism is wrong. It has become a fashion nowadays to raise
irrelevant questions on basics of any religion and then drag it to court, this
should be stopped," he said while speaking to News18.
in January, a Muslim woman in Kerala, associated with a progressive religious
organisation, had created a history of sorts by leading Friday namaz at a
mosque in Kerala's Malappuram district.
Quran does not differentiate between man and woman. It speaks only about the
faithful. But Islam has become a religion in which women are being oppressed.
By leading the namaz, I wanted to fight against the dominance of priesthood in
the community," 34-year-old K Jamitha, who had led the prayer, said.
Activist VP Zuhra, President of Kozhikode-based progressive Muslim women’s
forum NISA, had reportedly decided to petition the Supreme Court, praying that
Sunni mosques across the country must allow entry to women.
to News18 from Kozhikode, Zuhra said that the prime reason for her decision to
move court is the “apparent gender discrimination” at mosques. She added that
the move will help the cause of “equality”. “I am doing this for equality.
Women are never allowed inside Sunni mosques to pray and they, too, have the
right. Women were allowed to enter mosques even during the time of the
Prophet,” said Zuhra.
NISA chief on Wednesday said that Advocate Venkita Subramoniam will be filing
the Muslim women’s plea in the top court this week itself or by next week. The
Supreme Court had on September 28 opened the doors of Sabarimala temple to
women of all age groups. The court called the practice a form of
discrimination, smacking of gender bias and prejudice against a natural
biological process that every woman has to go through.
Delhi: Days after Supreme Court lifted the ban on entry of menstruating women
in the Sabarimala temple, a Kerala-based Muslim women’s outfit is now all set
to approach the top court to gain entry in Sunni temples.
Activist VP Zuhra, President of Kozhikode-based progressive Muslim women’s
forum NISA, has decided to petition the Supreme Court, praying that Sunni
mosques across the country must allow entry to women.
to News18 from Kozhikode, Zuhra said that the prime reason for her decision to
move court is the "apparent gender discrimination" at mosques. She
added that the move will help the cause of “equality”.
am doing this for equality. Women are never allowed inside Sunni mosques to
pray and they, too, have the right. Women were allowed to enter mosques even
during the time of the Prophet," said Zuhra.
Supreme Court had on September 28 opened the doors of Sabarimala temple to
women of all age groups. The court called the practice a form of
discrimination, smacking of gender bias and prejudice against a natural
biological process that every woman has to go through.
NISA chief on Wednesday said that Advocate Venkita Subramoniam will be filing
the Muslim women’s plea in the top court this week itself or by next week.
CPI(M) state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan had also questioned why do Sunni
mosques continue to restrict women’s entry.
should be no discrimination against women in any place, this is the stance that
[the party] is taking,” Kodiyeri had said.
are women going to some mosques, right? There is entry for women at the
Beemapally mosque in Thiruvananthapuram. So many mosques allow women to enter.
Women are even going on Hajj. If that’s the case, Mecca should also not have
allowed women, right? Be it a Sunni or anybody else, our stance is the same for
everyone,” Kodiyeri said.
League State General Secretary KPA Majeed, however, dismissed Kodiyeri's
statements, saying he was a "non-believer".
decision to move Supreme Court is likely to gain a strong footing in law
especially after the Sabarimala verdict where a CJI-led five judge Constitution
bench ruled that no religion can discriminate between genders.
India, women are allowed to enter mosques, including the Jama Masjid in Delhi,
but are not permitted to sit in the same congregation along with men to offer
prayers. They are often designated a separate space with certain restrictions on
praying after evening (maghrib).
2016, in a big win for women devotees, the Bombay High Court allowed women’s
entry into the Haji Ali Dargah’s inner sanctum. The court added that it will
give “necessary protection” to the respondents.
decision came after a PIL challenging the ban stated that gender justice is
inherent in the Quran and the decision contravenes the Hadith, which says that
there is no prohibition on women visiting graves.
In what could be another blow to All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB)
after instant Triple Talaq, NISA - a forum of Muslim women in Kerala, has
decided to approach the Supreme Court of India next week seeking its
intervention for permission to pray in mosques across India.
Zuhra, Social Activist and President of NISA, said the forum was holding
discussion with its lawyers on the issue and will move to the Apex Court next
week. The move came days after SC allowed women in the age group of 10 to 50
years to enter the Sabarimala temple in Kerala
are not at all allowed to enter mosques for prayers. In the present scenario,
when the apex court has granted permission for Hindu women to enter the
Sabarimala shrine, why Muslim women have been barred from the entry?" she
instant talaq which is illegal as per the Islamic Sharia and hence banned in
most of the Islamic countries, women are allowed, as per the tradition of
Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him), to pray in mosques almost everywhere
including Makkah, Madinah and Al-Aqsa - three most holy places for Muslims.
But, clerics in countries like India, Pakistan and Bangladesh do not allow
women to pray in mosques.
during the times of Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him), women who are in
their menstruating age were allowed to pray in the mosques. When the Prophet
(peace be upon him) himself advocated such things, why are women in India
suffering", asked Zuhra?
some clerics who have of late joined politics invite Muslim women to their
rallies. Even All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) recently organised
rallies and processions of women all across India. But, they refuse to permit
them entry into mosques for prayers.
there are some mosques in every city of the subcontinent that have suitable
arrangement for women worshippers like other parts of the world.
will now be interesting to see how the Supreme Court of India, which recently
banned instant talaq calling it against the Holy Quran, will deal with the
petition of NISA seeking permission to pray in mosques - a practice common
since the times of Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him) everyhwere in the world
except India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
The slave market opened at night. We could hear the commotion downstairs where
militants were registering and organising, and when the first man entered the
room, all the girls started screaming. It was like the scene of an explosion.
We moaned as though wounded, doubling over and vomiting on the floor, but none
of it stopped the militants.
paced around the room, staring at us, while we screamed and begged. They
gravitated toward the most beautiful girls first, asking, “How old are you?”
and examining their hair and mouths. “They are virgins, right?” they asked a
guard, who nodded and said, “Of course!” like a shopkeeper taking pride in his
product. Now the militants touched us anywhere they wanted, running their hands
over our breasts and our legs, as if we were animals.
was chaos while the militants paced the room, scanning girls and asking
questions in Arabic or the Turkmen language.
down!” militants kept shouting at us. “Be quiet!” But their orders only made us
scream louder. If it was inevitable that a militant would take me, I wouldn’t
make it easy for him. I howled and screamed, slapping away hands that reached
out to grope me. Other girls were doing the same, curling their bodies into
balls on the floor or throwing themselves across their sisters and friends to
try to protect them.
I lay there, another militant stopped in front of us. He was a high-ranking militant
named Salwan who had come with another girl, another young Yazidi from Hardan,
who he planned to drop off at the house while he shopped for her replacement.
“Stand up,” he said. When I didn’t, he kicked me. “You! The girl with the pink
jacket! I said, stand up!”
eyes were sunk deep into the flesh of his wide face, which seemed to be nearly
entirely covered in hair. He didn’t look like a man — he looked like a monster.
Sinjar [in northern Iraq] and taking girls to use as sex slaves wasn’t a
spontaneous decision made on the battlefield by a greedy soldier.
planned it all: how they would come into our homes, what made a girl more or
less valuable, which militants deserved a sabaya [sex slave] as incentive and
which should pay. They even discussed sabaya in their glossy propaganda
magazine, Dabiq, in an attempt to draw new recruits. But Daesh is not as
original as its members think it is.
has been used throughout history as a weapon of war. I never thought I would
have something in common with women in Rwanda — before all this, I didn’t know
that a country called Rwanda existed — and now I am linked to them in the worst
possible way, as a victim of a war crime that is so hard to talk about that no
one in the world was prosecuted for committing it until just 16 years before
Daesh came to Sinjar.
the lower floor, a militant was registering the transactions in a book, writing
down our names and the names of the militants who took us. I thought about
being taken by Salwan, how strong he looked and how easily he could crush me
with his bare hands. No matter what he did, and no matter how much I resisted,
I would never be able to fight him off. He smelled of rotten eggs and cologne.
was looking at the floor, at the feet and ankles of the militants and girls who
walked by me. In the crowd, I saw a pair of men’s sandals and ankles that were
skinny, almost womanly, and before I could think about what I was doing, I
flung myself toward those feet. I started begging. “Please, take me with you,”
whatever you want, I just can’t go with this giant.” I don’t know why the thin
guy agreed, but taking one look at me, he turned to Salwan and said, “She’s
mine.” Salwan didn’t argue. The skinny man was a judge in Mosul, and no one
disobeyed him. I followed the thin man to the desk. “What’s your name?” he
asked me. He spoke in a soft but unkind voice.
I said, and he turned to the registrar. The man seemed to recognise the
militant right away and began recording our information. He said our names as
he wrote them down — “Nadia, Hajji Salman” — and when he spoke the name of my
captor, I thought I heard his voice waver a bit, as if he were scared, and I
wondered if I had made a huge mistake.
Murad eventually escaped her Daesh captors. She was smuggled out of Iraq and in
early 2015 went as a refugee to Germany. Later that year she began to campaign
to raise awareness of human trafficking.
November 2015, a year and three months after Daesh came to [my hometown] Kocho,
I left Germany for Switzerland to speak to a UN forum on minority issues. It
was the first time I would tell my story in front of a large audience. I wanted
to talk about everything — the children who died of dehydration fleeing Daesh,
the families still stranded on the mountain, the thousands of women and
children who remained in captivity, and what my brothers saw at the site of the
was only one of hundreds of thousands of Yazidi victims. My community was
scattered, living as refugees inside and outside of Iraq, and Kocho was still
occupied by Daesh. There was so much the world needed to hear about what was
happening to Yazidis.
wanted to tell them that so much more needed to be done. We needed to establish
a safe zone for religious minorities in Iraq; to prosecute Daesh — from the
leaders down to the citizens who had supported their atrocities — for genocide
and crimes against humanity; and to liberate all of Sinjar. I would have to
tell the audience about Hajji Salman and the times he raped me and all the
abuse I witnessed. Deciding to be honest was one of the hardest decisions I
have ever made, and also the most important.
shook as I read my speech. As calmly as I could, I talked about how Kocho had
been taken over and girls like me had been taken as sabaya. I told them about
how I had been raped and beaten repeatedly and how I eventually escaped. I told
them about my brothers who had been killed. It never gets easier to tell your
time you speak it, you relive it. When I tell someone about the checkpoint
where the men raped me, or the feeling of Hajji Salman’s whip across the
blanket as I lay under it, or the darkening Mosul sky while I searched the
neighbourhood for some sign of help, I am transported back to those moments and
all their terror. Other Yazidis are pulled back into these memories, too.
story, told honestly and matter-of-factly, is the best weapon I have against
terrorism, and I plan on using it until those terrorists are put on trial.
There is still so much that needs to be done. World leaders and particularly
Muslim religious leaders need to stand up and protect the oppressed.
gave my brief address. When I finished telling my story, I continued to talk. I
told them I wasn’t raised to give speeches. I told them that every Yazidi wants
Daesh prosecuted for genocide, and that it was in their power to help protect
vulnerable people all over the world. I told them that I wanted to look the men
who raped me in the eye and see them brought to justice. More than anything
else, I said, I want to be the last girl in the world with a story like mine.
FRANCISCO - The head covering is among the most identifiable elements of Muslim
women's dress and most likely to be portrayed as drab and restrictive to the
a new exhibition in San Francisco shows that the covering used by some Muslim
women can be a bright yellow head wrap or a loose drape of rose; a black silk
and lace scarf by Dolce & Gabbana; or a hood attached to an extra-long
Muslim Fashions" is on view at the de Young Museum with about 80 ensembles
by nearly 60 designers from around the world, including the Middle East and
Southeast Asia. The clothes are vibrant, elegant and playful, ranging from
high-end couture to sassy streetwear.
people behind the installation, which is the first major museum exhibition of
its kind, hope to spark a deeper understanding of the women who are part of the
second-largest religion in the world.
a time when Muslim women are being increasingly targeted for using their fashion
choices to assert their independence and identity, we hope that this exhibition
will allow a positive review and examination of a community that's often talked
about, but rarely given the chance to speak and present itself," said
Gisue Hariri, one of two Iranian-born sisters whose architecture firm designed
exhibit comes amid conflicts in Western countries over Muslim clothing.
recently banned face veils in public, saying the move was critical to ensure
public safety and uphold Danish values. Austria, Belgium and France have
similar laws. In the U.S., President Donald Trump issued a controversial ban on
travel from several majority-Muslim countries.
the idea for the exhibition predated Trump's election, said Jill D'Alessandro,
curator in charge of costume and textile arts for the Fine Arts Museums of San
Francisco, which includes the de Young Museum.
said the seed was planted in 2016, when France was in an uproar over a ban on
"burkini" swimsuits worn by some Muslim beachgoers. At the same time,
D'Alessandro was seeing examples of chic "modest fashion" embraced by
young Muslim women who wanted to express their religious piety.
was the dichotomy we were interested in," she said. "That was the
kernel. It was like, 'Look at this. Isn't this so funny? They're so fashionable
and yet people want to discuss what they can wear at the beach.' "
fashion has become a $44 billion industry, with more Western fashion houses
catering to Muslim consumers.
year, Nike introduced a headscarf made of high-tech fabrics. A Max Mara fashion
show in 2017 featured a model in a hijab, her body wrapped in one of the
company's long tailored coats - a common look among wealthier Muslim shoppers.
Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, an organization that studies
American Muslims, released a poll that showed most women said they wear a hijab
for religious reasons. Only 1 percent said they were required to do so by
Mogahed, the institute's research director, is delighted that de Young has
taken on the topic. Mogahed, who is not affiliated with the show, balks at
governments that force Muslim women to cover themselves in a certain way and
those that won't let women cover up as they wish.
perception that people have of Muslims in America or Muslims globally is often
shaped by sensational headlines that ignore and minimize what the majority is
all about," she said.
featured hail from Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Malaysia, Singapore, Iran and other
of D'Alessandro's treasured finds is a 2012 "Hoody Dress" by British
designer Sarah Elenany. She created long-sleeve, knee-length dresses for the
Scout Association in the United Kingdom so Muslim girls could rappel and climb
comfortably. The dresses were worn over trousers or leggings.
among the pieces is a traditional Pakistani wedding ensemble of red silk and
chiffon, with metallic embroidery and glass beads. It is on loan from Saba Ali,
a San Francisco-area stylist who served as adviser to the exhibition and styled
the head coverings.
is thrilled to be part of the show, which ends in January and then moves to
Frankfurt's Museum Angewandte Kunst.
feel it's so important in this day and age and the climate we live in; a lot of
people don't know Muslims," Ali said. "Art is a means to a
conversation for people to get to know a culture or people better."
on the International Day of the Girl Child themed, “With Her: A Skilled Girl
Force”, we urge the government of Malaysia to ban child marriage, end female
genital mutilation (FGM), and uphold the rights of the girl child as required
by international conventions ratified by Malaysia.
one in five girls are said to be married before the age of 18, and if this
number isn’t reduced, there will be 1.2 billion girls who will be married as
children by 2050, according to UN agencies. FGM, on the other hand, threatens
about three million girls annually and at least 200 million girls and women
have been cut in 30 countries, according to Unicef.
realise the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Malaysia must end harmful
practices such as child, early and forced marriages, and eliminate FGM by
2030,” said Sivananthi Thanenthiran, executive director of the Asian Pacific
Resource and Research Centre for Women (ARROW), a regional NGO that champions
sexual and reproductive health and rights of women and young people.
is a critical part of the SDG 5 of achieving gender equality and empower all
women and girls.”
being a signatory to both the Convention on Elimination of All Forms of
Discrimination of Women (CEDAW) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child
(CRC), both these practices have high prevalence in Malaysia. Earlier this
year, Sisters in Islam (SIS) and ARROW released a study, “Child Marriage: Its
Relationship with Religion, Culture and Patriarchy, a National Report on
report found that nearly 153,000 (152, 835) persons below the age of 19 were
married, and were mostly from the Malay Muslim community. Of this, 80,000 were
girls and the remaining were boys. The study, however, relied on government
data from 2010.
on FGM, few and far studies have been done in Malaysia. The practice is
shrouded in silence as it is intermingled with cultural and ethnic demands
alongside bodily autonomy – the right to control one’s own body, and bodily
integrity – the right to autonomy and self-determination over one’s own body –
of children and women.
added: “FGM has long lasting physical and psychological effects on girls.
Similarly, child brides are neither physically nor emotionally ready to become
wives and mothers.
need to protect the girl child so she can go on to freely decide on matters of
sexuality and reproduction, to have the right to consent and bodily integrity,
in the future.
strongly urge the government of Malaysia to uphold gender equality and empower
all women and girls in the country by ending both these practices immediately.”
– October 11, 2018.
Greece: Three women of unknown origin were found dead, presumably murdered, on
Wednesday on the Greek side of the river border between Turkey and Greece,
police sources said, an area known for illegal migrant crossings.
bodies, found in a field by a passerby, lay a short distance from each other
near a migration route from Turkey over the Evros River frontier to
northeastern Greece, though it was not yet known whether the women were
said they suspected foul play. All three had stab wounds, the semi-official
Athens News Agency (ANA) reported.
were found 50 meters away from the river,” a police official told Reuters. Two
of the victims were believed to be aged between 15 and 18 and it was possible
they were related, ANA said.
Evros border area straddles an old people smuggling corridor that regained
popularity after European Union and Turkish authorities in 2016 sealed off sea
routes in the Aegean used by hundreds of thousands of migrants in 2015.
the first half of 2018, more than 10,000 migrants and refugees arrived in
Greece from Turkey by crossing the Evros, a non-governmental aid agency said in
MELLAL: A 17-year-old Moroccan girl whose alleged gang rape and forcible
tattooing sparked a public outcry has confronted in court the only minor among
the 12 suspects accused of assaulting and torturing her.
girl, identified only as Khadija, was brought in through a backdoor for the
court hearing Wednesday out of concern relatives of the suspects might attempt
to attack her.
her ordeal to the investigating judge, Khadija alleged that the suspect, also
17-years-old, was among the people who abused and held her captive for two
months, according to her lawyer, Brahim Hashane.
of his age, the teenager will have a separate trial on charges of human
trafficking, abuse and rape, Hashane said.
mother spoke outside of the court, where dozens of relatives cried for the
release of the suspects. She claimed her son had never met Khadija.
judge scheduled a third hearing for Oct.24.
case generated a large public reaction in Morocco. Violence against women is
widespread in the North African kingdom, but largely ignored. More than 116,600
people signed a petition urging action to end a culture that turns a blind eye
to such violence.
suspects were initially detained after Khadija was freed from the alleged
captivity in mid-August, while three more were thought to be on the run. The
young men face charges ranging from failure to report a crime to abduction,
rape, abuse and human trafficking.
girl has said two men kidnapped her at knifepoint when she was visiting her
aunt during the May-June holy month of Ramadan. She said they sold her to other
men in exchange for money and drugs. She claimed her captors gave her drugs
that knocked her out for days at a time.
the stigma associated with sexual abuse in this Muslim nation, the girl’s
parents initially refused to report her case to authorities.
a young age, Arab women are taught that hair matters, and, often, that they
were born with the wrong kind. In their formative years, when they are still
calibrating their sense of self worth, young girls are instructed by their
aunts and mothers to rid themselves of their curls—to get keratin treatments to
straighten it all away permanently. Girls are told they are told that only
straight hair is beautiful, and to be beautiful, they will have to change.
no wonder, then, that when Netflix was looking for a director for its film
Nappily Ever After, based on the bestselling book about the hair struggles of a
black woman in America, the producers behind the project approached the
groundbreaking Saudi Arabian director Haifaa Al Mansour.
they sent it to me, I fell in love with the story. I love that it is very
entertaining, it is a romantic comedy—a genre that, as women, we’re very
nostalgic for, as we haven’t seen it for a while. But it has a strong message
about race and social commentary at the heart of it that is done in such a
sweet way and an empowering way. Right after I read the script I decided to
make it,” Mansour tells me.
the film, a woman named Violet (Sanaa Lathan), frustrated that she spends her
life trying to fit other people’s ideas of who she should be, shaves her head
in an act of defiance, embracing her natural hairstyle for the first time in
her life—with transformative results.
hair is curly, but it is a different kind of curly. Still, I understood what it
means for women to always have to have a perfect look. You always need to
straighten your hair, you always need to fill an image. All Arab girls do with
their hair. We don’t always have Bollywood hair, we all go and straighten
it—every day maybe. I understood what it means to not be satisfied with who you
are and want to fit a different image,” Mansour says.
up, Mansour did not have the same pressure that Violet in Nappily Ever After
does from her own mother, but she still felt the need to conform.
mom was very relaxed. She didn’t ask me to do my hair. I come from a really fun
family. At school, I didn’t want to go with my hair all frizzy, no way! It’s
not the culture. I wanted to look nice. Especially in middle school—that’s
where it starts. I didn’t have a lot of pressure at home, but from the bigger
society, it’s a different story,” says Mansour.
hopes that young women in the Middle East can break out of the cycle, spend
less time feeling that they have to change themselves to be beautiful.
think it is very important for women to be who they are. Also, for young girls,
they need to invest their energy in something that builds their character. When
I was 10 years old, I was really professional at using the blow-dryer. I used
to blow-dry my hair and so was everyone else around the house. Why was I so
skilled in that? Why? I was so proud of myself that I could do it. I was young,
and I could do it really well! But why? I felt like I should have invested all
my energy in playing basketball—something that develops me as a person rather
than a skill like that,” says Mansour.
think young girls in the Middle East need to be given the opportunity to grow
in a healthier way, where they can go play and they don’t care about their
hair, or their dresses, or their image, and how people will view them. “
with the actress
was struck by the ability of Sanaa Lathan, famous for films such as The Best
Man and Love & Basketball, to show the complicated layers of emotions her
character needed to portray in the film’s most pivotal scene—when she finally
sheds her straightened hair.
such an amazing actress; she has such amazing muscles when it comes to acting.
The scene where she cut her hair, we had three cameras mounted. We knew we
could only do it once, and we trained and everything. You feel removed as a
director because you cannot call cut. You can’t go adjust the lights, get a
different angle,” says Mansour.
it starts, it starts, and you lose your power at that moment—you’re just there
to witness it and hope for the best. It was a nerve-racking moment, but she was
amazing. She gave me so much feeling, and everything that I wanted from that
scene—joy, conflict, emotions, sadness, a person who is shedding everything
that has been installed in her head. It was amazing to witness.”
Mansour is nearing production of her next film The Perfect Candidate, which
will mark her return to Saudi Arabia after two major features in the West.
gearing to go. We’ve got finance and we’re ready. I’m very excited about that
project, and I’m really excited about going back to Saudi Arabia to shoot.
Especially as Saudi Arabia is now open for cinema, it is such a wonderful time.
I can’t wait to be there.”
— Mariyam Abu Al-Ainain, chairperson of the women’s wing at Jeddah Mayoralty,
said that the Kingdom is witnessing an economic transformation with a thrust on
women’s involvement in almost all key economic activities.
number of women’s firms in the city shot up to 5,446 and these include many new
areas of economic activities such as laundries, women’s sports clubs,
restaurants, studios, she said.
said that her branch is striving to extend the best possible services to women
clients, mainly investors.
eased the procedures for rendering services to clients such as the issuance of
licenses by starting online services under the system of ‘Mayoralty without
was instrumental in bringing down the number of women visitors to the mayoralty
office from 70-80 to 13 in a month as most of them rely on online services,”
said there are 30 women inspectors at the mayoralty who are actively involved
in carrying out raids and detecting violations on a daily basis.
has been a sharp decline in the number of violations, such as failure in
renewal of licenses or registration of entities or keeping health cards, she
of a bachelor’s degree from King Abdulaziz University, Al-Ainain joined the
mayoralty as a supervisor at customer service.
was promoted as deputy supervisor at the women’s section and then supervisor of
the women’s inspection division before being appointed as the director general
of the wing of the women’s services.
— About 30 female fencers are set to undergo intensive training before
participating in the first round of the Saudi Women’s Fencing Championship for
under-13, 15 and 20 years, from Friday.
will be the first championship for the women’s local season in the three
divisions — foil, epee and sabre. Twenty-two of the female fencers have
participated in the Olympic Fencing Program, which was held last summer for
championship, which will be held at the Dar Al-Uloom Girls’ University Indoor
Stadium in Riyadh, will be supervised by the Deputy Chairperson of the Saudi
Fencing Federation for Women’s Affairs, Princess Haifa Bint Muhammad Bin Saud.
will be a number of female volunteers from the Saudi Federation for Community
Sports and an integrated women’s medical team to assist Princess Haifa in her
will be the first women’s fencing championship in the Kingdom. It has been
approved by the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee and will be included in the
internal season program, with direct support from the General Sports Authority
Aziz El Massassi
DAOUD was the only woman to take to the track in Egypt’s Red Sea resort of
Sharm El-Sheikh, where the Palestinian racer impressed the crowds with her
“drift” driving skills.
has mastered the art of drift — deliberately oversteering to make the rear
wheels skid — and traveled to Sharm El-Sheikh for a regional competition.
I was little I’ve become used to meeting up with the guys to play football or
tennis,” said the 27-year-old on the sidelines of the competition.
now dominates her life, evident from Instagram where she often poses with her
thick wavy hair falling over driving leathers.
I was little, I loved cars and I had a collection of them to play with,” said
Daoud, a polyglot who was born in the US state of Texas and went to a French
school in occupied Jerusalem.
Sharm El-Sheikh, she zigzagged around the tarmac track and dodged obstacles as
thick white smoke and sparks came off her car.
only one girl!” said a young enthusiast of drift, which emerged in Japan in the
were judged by a professional panel on their style and their driving skills,
which count as much as their speed.
had to abandon the second round of the competition due to engine failure, but
nonetheless picked up a trophy for her participation as the sole woman.
wishes other Arab women would take part in professional competitions. “Let Arab
girls show the world that we also follow our dreams,” she said.
are however more women racing cars in the region, including four other
Palestinians who featured alongside Daoud in a “Speed Sisters” documentary.
‘to feel free’
has been more than a decade since Daoud first raced, borrowing a car from her
mother who she credits as being the sole supporter of her ambitions.
learnt drifting “on the streets of Palestine” in 2010, before moving to Dubai
where she now lives.
first, in Palestine, people would say to me: ‘But what are you doing? The sport
is for the guys!’” she said.
went for what I want I didn’t listen to anyone... When I got successful people
started to respect me (and say) ‘wow, she did it!’” added Daoud, who regularly
takes part in international competitions.
drifting is more than just sport and spectacle for Daoud.
are under occupation so this helps us, it helps me to drive to feel free,” she
Jerusalem, seen by Palestinians as the capital of their future state, and the
West Bank have been occupied by Israel since 1967. “I want to show the world
that just because we are under occupation, it doesn’t mean we will stay holed
up in our homes,” Daoud said. — AFP
— After its successful opening in Jeddah, BOUNCE Middle East is all set to open
the world’s first female-only trampoline park in Riyadh.
will be bringing its high-energy trampoline park and X-Park adventure challenge
course to the Saudi capital allowing the female residents to literally fly
through the air and bounce off the walls.
3,000-sq. meter warehouse on Riyadh’s main East-West Road will offer
wall-to-wall activities for women of all ages and abilities and will be the
largest in the capital.
venue will be packed with over 80 interconnected trampolines, a dodgeball
arena, slam dunk, huge inflatable air bag and the famous X-Park. The venue will
feature plenty of other entertainment options for the women of Riyadh.
Attieh, managing partner of BOUNCE Saudi Arabia, said: “Our first trampoline
park in Saudi opened last year in Jeddah and the response has been electrifying.
Thousands of families in the city are enjoying this new way to have fun and
the opening of BOUNCE in Riyadh, we will provide ladies of all ages and
abilities with one of the newest and most popular entertainment options in the
market, as well as a training ground for all things aerial sports.
you know that 10 minutes of jumping on a trampoline burns the same number of
calories as 30 minutes of running; that’s not from me, just ask the guys from
NASA. The beauty of this is that it’s a lot of fun and you don’t even realize
you’re getting an amazing full body workout.”
recently held a recruitment drive in Riyadh and were overwhelmed with the
response receiving over 5,000 registrations. Interviews were held in the format
of the X-Factor auditions where the candidates were asked to demonstrate tricks
and impress the BOUNCE panel with their amazing personalities.
Davies, CEO of BOUNCE Middle East, said: “We are off to a great start in Riyadh
with more than 5,000 ladies applying to be part of the BOUNCE Tribe and we’ve
been blown away by the talent within the local community. We are always looking
for good talent and we look forward to adding more people to our tribe.”— SG
Minister (CM) Punjab Sardar Usman Buzdar on Wednesday said women police played
a pivotal role in improving image of this department among masses.
a passing out parade of Women Police Officers at Chung headquarters, he said
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government attached high significance to women’s
role in national development and would ensure jobs to women in every
cited that the PTI government appointed women as District Police Officers
(DPOs) for the first time.
said the foundation of ‘New Pakistan’ has already been laid by the PTI
government and called upon the people to contribute their part in order to
translate the dream of Prime Minister Imran Khan into reality.
the chief minister inspected the guard of honour and the passing out parade of
women police officers. Out of 424 passing out women police officers about 315
would be deputed in different districts, while the rest would be deputed at
chief minister Sardar Usman Buzdar has said that PTI government inherited
sagging economy. Regrettably, the past government devastated the national institutions
because of its incompetence. Due to the wrong policies of the previous
government, problems of the people were compounded and public interest was
was talking to the MNAs and MPAs of the PTI from different districts who called
on him at his office. The chief minister said that prime minister Imran Khan is
compelled to make difficult decisions to improve the economic conditions and
these decisions will become the foundation of the bright future of the country.
prime minister’s vision of Pakistan is a guarantor to the bright future of the
country, he added. Our every moment is dedicated to give better future to the
people and they will soon perceive positive changes around them. We will
transform the country as a new Pakistan. He said that decisions are being made
for public welfare by rising above the political interest and effects of
ostensible difficult decisions will be durable and positive.
other friendly government could come into power in Pakistan than the PTI, he
added. My doors are always open to the assembly members and their respect is
very dear to me. Decisions are being made in punjab in consultation with the
assembly members and the consultation process is bearing positive effects, he
who called on him included MNAs namely Zahoor Hussain Qureshi, Muhammad Afzal
Khan Dhandla, Ahmed Hussain Deher, Malik Muhammad Aamir Dogar, Mian Muhammad
Shafique, Sahibzada Muhammad Mehboob Sultan, Muhammad Ahmer Sultan, Ghulam Bibi
Bharwana, Khurram Shahzad, Raza Nasrullah, Sardar Talib Nakai, Umer Aslam Khan,
Amjad Ali Khan, Raja Riaz, Faiz Ullah, Shaneela Ruth, provincial minister
Muhammad Asif Nakai, Special assistant Umer Farooq and MPAs namely Ghazanfer
Abbas, Latif Nazar, Shakeel Shahid, Syed Abbas Ali Shah and PTI leader Firdous
Rad has disappeared after she reported in to the Department of Intelligence
which had summoned her. No one has any information about her whereabouts.
Rad is a young poet from Doroud, in Lorestan Province, western Iran. She had
been previously summoned three times and interrogated by the Intelligence
Department. She was constantly called by intelligence agents and threatened on
on Saturday, October 6, 2018, she was summoned to the Department of
Intelligence in the city of Doroud. She reported in and never returned home.
Rad was among those arrested during the uprisings in Doroud, one of the hotbeds
of protests in January 2018. She was interrogated and subsequently released,
however, agents of the Ministry of Intelligence continuously called her on the
phone and made threats.
Rad was summoned to the Department of Intelligence on July 14, 2018, where she
was questioned, intimidated and insulted by the interrogators, but she was
released on the same day. The last time Mina Rad was summoned was on October 6,
2018, when she did not return.
Iranian regime has recently stepped up its campaign of arresting human rights
activists and issuing heavy verdicts for those arrested in the December-January
in the past two months, Hoda Amid, lawyer, Najmeh Vahedi and Rezvaneh
Mohammadi, women’s rights activists; the regime has arrested Zahra
Modarreszadeh, civil rights activist; Hajar Saeedi, Sorayya Khedri, Afsaneh
Khorsandi, Negisa Shahbazi, and Sahar Kazemi, Kurd activists; Sousan Mehrani,
55, Mohaddeseh Mehrani, 50, and Elnaz, 28, relatives of the victims of the 1988
have also issued sentences from 9 months and 74 lashes to 7 years for student
activists Parisa Rafii, Roya Saghiri, Soha Mortezaii, and Maryam (Massoumeh)
Mohammadi; retired teacher Aliyeh Eghdam-Doost; Mahin Taj Ahmadpour, a street
vendor; and Neda Yousefi.
by the Coroner’s Office revealed that a seven-year-old girl child, Donya Veisi,
who had apparently died when the school wall crumbled on her, had been actually
raped and murdered, and the wall collapse was a set up to cover up the heinous
Ghorbani, general director of the Department of Education in Kurdistan
Province, announced that Donya Veisi, a first grade student of the elementary
school of Garmash village, had been severely injured on Monday, October 8, 2018,
when an old wall in the school yard collapsed.
Veisi was immediately taken to the Be’ssat Hospital of Sanandaj, by her father,
teacher and the school principal, but lost her life to serious injuries.
said the school had 13 students of different levels who studied in the same
class. He had reported several times on the worn-out infrastructure of the
school without Education Ministry officials heeding his warnings. Consequently,
the collapse of the school wall took the life of a girl student, Ghorbani said.
(The state-run Tasnim news agency – October 8, 2018)
Wednesday, October 10, 2018, however, news leaked out of the Coroner’s Office
of Sanandaj that their examinations revealed that Donya Veisi, the
seven-year-old girl student who was experiencing her first days in school, had
been raped and then killed by a direct strike on her head.
people of Iranian Kurdistan have declared that they will hold a protest
demonstration on Saturday, October 13, 2018, against the violence committed against
the innocent girl, Donya Veisi.
is not the first time that such crimes victimize innocent and defenseless girl
children. Unfortunately, despite public opinion pressure and repeated appeals
by human rights and women’s rights activists to pass a law on violence against
women and criminalize its perpetrators, no such bill has been adopted by the
bill on elimination of violence against women was first renamed as “Provision
of Security for Women” bill, many of its articles were subsequently deleted,
and it remains stuck in the labyrinths of law and decision making after some 10
are bearing the brunt of Iraq's disastrous modern history.
early advances in women's rights, including the fact that Iraq was the first
country in the Arab world to have a woman serve as cabinet minister back in
1959, and that Iraqi women have been allowed to train as doctors for almost 100
years, society has taken a number of steps backwards in gender equality and
women's rights in recent decades.
many Iraqi women try to meet overwhelming work and family obligations with
little assistance from men. Some are forced to care for their children, parents
and siblings all by themselves, as men in their lives continue to fight and die
on ever-shifting military fronts. To make matters worse, most extreme forms of
gender-based violence are also prevalent in Iraq. In recent years, religious
militias massacred dozens of sex workers and tortured journalists in Baghdad.
Meanwhile, ISIL enslaved thousands of Yazidi women, many of whom are still
the last couple of months, another worrying trend has emerged. Between August
and September, four high-profile women have been assassinated. They lived in
different cities and had different occupations. They only had two common
traits: They were all women and they were all successful in their respective
Fares, one of Iraq's most prominent social media stars, was assassinated in
broad daylight on September 28; Suad al-Ali, a human rights activist (to whom I
do not have the honour of being related), was killed on September 25; Rasha
al-Hassan, a plastic surgeon and public figure, was killed on August 23; and
Rafeef al-Yassiri, also a plastic surgeon with her own clinic, died under
mysterious circumstances on August 16. Authorities initially called
al-Yassiri's death "a drug overdose", but have not offered an update,
leading to rumours that she might have been poisoned.
October 7, two more women, one an owner of a beauty parlour and the other an
activist, were killed in Basra. In all of these cases, the assassins appeared
to be highly trained, leading security forces to believe that these were not
random attacks. A number of other high-profile women have also received death
is still unclear whether these killings were part of a single conspiracy, but
together they sent Iraqi women an undeniable message: "You should not seek
to break out of society's traditional limitations."
this day, many Iraqi men suffer from fragile masculinity and view women's
professional success as a threat. This may translate into physical threats and
attacks in certain cases. The fact that Iraq is awash in weapons as well as
regular and irregular armed groups adds to the volatility of the situation.
This makes some Iraqi women reluctant to pursue their professional ambitions.
This is why it is reasonable to assume that the latest wave of femicides will
add to these worries and make some women reconsider their career aspirations.
there is some cause for optimism, as the killings provoked a promising social
response. Iraqi society has widely condemned the murders and rounded on the few
commentators who tried to brush them off. Haider Zaweer, a TV presenter,
tweeted that people should stop worrying about Ms Fares, describing her as a
"prostitute who was killed" (implying first that she deserved to be
murdered and second that it was not worth investigating). The response was fast
and furious, especially on social media. His remarks were condemned by
thousands and eventually, his employer was forced to pull him off the air. High
profile figures, including some of the country's most popular social media
personalities, have stated that any attempt to justify the murders is
tantamount to complicity.
reactions demonstrated that attitudes towards women are starting to change in
Iraq and larger segments of society are refusing to tolerate violence against
successful women. This is an important if small, step; a larger effort will be
required to make further progress. Iraqi society is awash with hard barriers
for women, and subtle and unsubtle gender-based discrimination. The men and
women of Iraq are scarred by conflict and close to no effort has been made to
study the effects this has had on women's rights. Moreover, nobody has attempted
to outline, let alone implement, a convincing strategy that could improve
women's rights in the country.
obvious, partial remedy to gender-based violence in Iraq would be to improve
the rule of law. Iraq's human rights situation is notoriously fragile. Dozens,
if not hundreds, of reports detail how ineffectual the police, prosecutors and
judges have been in prosecuting criminal behaviour. Investigatory methods
remain limited, prosecutions still rely heavily on forced confessions and allegations
of torture are generally not investigated by the authorities.
as importantly, however, is the sense of impunity that dominates Iraq's
political class. Hardly any action has been taken to address the questionable
actions of armed groups that are connected with the country's main political
powers. Following the most recent round of protests in Basra, a lawyer who
offered to defend protesters and protest leaders (of whom Ms al-Ali was one)
was killed. After each high profile assassination, government officials
invariably announce that investigations have been launched, almost all of which
fizzle with the passage of time. Even investigations that are concluded hardly
ever lead to any form of political accountability.
current government-formation process is an opportunity to move state
institutions in the right direction. Iraqi women from all levels of society are
in desperate need of protection, and the state now has an opportunity to
kick-start a necessary process of change by reforming judicial institutions and
improving the rule of law. None of Iraq's previous governments have ever
committed to a coherent strategy to improve women's rights, so if there is one
thing that the next government can do it is to prioritise this one area, for the
benefit of Iraqi women.
al-Ali is an Iraqi lawyer who has published widely on Iraq and on
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Muslim News, Arab
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in Islam, Islamic
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