14 July 2020 - NPWJ News Digest on FGM & Women's rights


Women and girls deserve more protection in emergencies, UN rights council hears
UN News, 13 Jul 2020

The collective impact of climate change, COVID-19 and conflict mean that well over 200 million people will likely need humanitarian assistance by 2022, the UN’s deputy rights chief said on Monday. Nada Al-Nashif, Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights, told the UN Human Rights Council that the situation is especially worrying for women and girls. They face additional hardships from the pandemic – including sexual abuse - Ms. Al-Nashif warned, particularly those displaced by war.

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'Silent pandemic': How women in the Middle East and North Africa are threatened online
The Middle East Eye, 13 Jul 2020

Women in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) are facing increased harassment and abuse online as they continue to fight sexual harassment in the streets and domestic violence heightened by the stress of the coronavirus pandemic. For years, the digital sphere has often proven to be a hostile environment for women across the globe, as many have dealt with hacking, privacy violations, online smear campaigns threatening their freedom of expression and increased gender-based violence.

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Bangladesh arrests three over Dubai sex trafficking operation
Reuters, 13 Jul 2020

DHAKA (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Bangladesh police said on Monday they have arrested three men over the trafficking of hundreds of young women taken to Dubai on the promise of jobs in hotels and then forced into sex work. The victims were paid a month’s salary up front and told they would work as housekeepers or dancers. But when they got to Dubai, many were forced to have sex for money and beaten if they refused, police said.

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South Korea’s Women Are Still Waiting for Justice
The New York Times, 13 Jul 2020

An elaborate public funeral was held on Monday in Seoul, South Korea, in honor of the city’s mayor, Park Won-soon, a prominent human rights lawyer and confidant of President Moon Jae-in. Mr. Park was found dead last week, by suicide, hours after a personal assistant in his office filed a claim of sexual abuse and harassment against him. In his suicide note, Mr. Park said nothing about the accusations, but wrote, "I'm sorry to everyone." 

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Pressure mounts on Priti Patel over case of 11-year-old at risk of FGM
The Guardian, 10 Jul 2020

Barristers, former judges, politicians and campaigners are among 300 people who have signed an open letter to the home secretary, Priti Patel, urging her to grant asylum to an 11-year-old girl at high risk of female genital mutilation if taken abroad. Helena Kennedy QC, former chief prosecutor Nazir Afzal, campaigner Leyla Hussein and more than 30 MPs have added their names to the letter published by the the Good Law Project alongside a petition launched on Friday.

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