27 Feb 2018 - NPWJ News Digest on FGM & women's rights

NPWJ in the news

Elimination des MGF au Burkina : Les FDS appelées en renfort, Aline Ariane BAMOUNI, Aujourd'hui au Faso, 27 février 2018
Elimination des MGF au Burkina : Les FDS appelées en renfort, Aline Ariane BAMOUNI, Aujourd'hui au Faso, 27 Feb 2018

Un atelier d’information et de plaidoyer sur la problématique des Mutilations génitales féminines (MGF) à l’intention des Forces de défense et de sécurité (FDS) s’est ouvert à Ouagadougou, ce lundi 26 février 2018.
Le présent atelier, organisé par l’ONG Voix de femmes, en collaboration avec «No Peace Without Justice» constitue l’une des dernières activités du projet Ban MGF et s’inscrit dans la dynamique de mobilisation des acteurs nationaux contre la pratique des MGF. Pour la présidente de Voix de femmes, il s’agit  de bénéficier de l’implication plus grande et soutenue des FDS pour l’accélération de l’élimination des MGF.

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Gamcotrap commemorates Zero Tolerance Day to end FGM
By Isatou Senghore-Njie, The Point, 23 Feb 2018

The Gambia Committee on Traditional Practices -Gamcotrap- and No Peace Without Justice last Wednesday celebrated the International Zero tolerance day onto end Female Genital Mutilation –FGM- on the theme “Accelerate Zero Tolerance to end FGM by 2030. Over the years, Gamcotrap has taken the lead in celebrating zero tolerance to end FGM in The Gambia working with all sectors across the country. The international day of zero tolerance on FGM is a global event adopted by the United Nations sub-commission on human rights.
Speaking at the event hosted at the Friendship hostel at the independence Stadium in Bakau, American Ambassador Patricia Aslup said as the day is celebrated, people must know that zero tolerance means exactly that zero tolerance is placed on an act of violence against women that neither has religious basis nor relevance in modern culture.
“We know that FMG/C is considered a rite of passage in communities and because of this, we know that it will not end simply by passing a law. FGM/C will not end until communities collectively and publicly advocate for zero tolerance and work together to end its practice.” Ambassador Aslup said the advancement of women and girls is essential to peace, prosperity, and security, noting that they remain committed in their efforts to combat all forms of gender-based violence, including FGM/C while renewing the call for zero tolerance to end the harmful procedure that affects women and girls in far too many places across the globe.
Musa Jallow from Gamcotrap said law is necessary but its effective implementation and enforcement and public awareness of the powers of the law is the most important.
He added that enforcing the law that prohibits FGM is critical to legitimise local advocacy and educational efforts, to strengthen those who seek to defy social pressures of tradition and reject FGM to protect its victims and to end this event.
Niccolo Figa Talamanca from No Peace Without Justice said the liberation of women is very essential and the mission that brought Gamcotrap into the fight is the same mission that brought his organisation.

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FGM violates women’s right at least 200 million survivors says –Aslup
By Sarjo Camara Singateh, Foroyaa, 23 Feb 2018

Female genital mutilation continues to hamper lives of women and girls. The US ambassador, Patricia Aslup said at least 200 million girls and women alive have under gone some form of FGM/C.
She said the act is a grave and lifelong harm, it has been proven to cause to the physical and mental health of women and girls.  She highlighted that if the current trends continue, many more millions of girls are at risk of being subjected to the practice by 2030.
It is with this backdrop that GAMCOTRAP and its partners join the whole world to commemorate Zero tolerance to end female genital mutilation yesterday at the Friendship Hostel, in Bakau Stadium.
Niccolo Figa-Talamanca, BanFGM Project Worldwide Secretary General of No Peace Without Justice said the duration to end female genital mutilation is been a while but gaining momentum. “A right is a right if it is protected by the law,” he said
He noted that the physical manifestation of women leaders in the struggle to end FGM cannot be estimated. He also calls for the enforcement of the law to protect women. He stated that collective measures are needed to protect the girl child, because it takes a lot of energy to protect women from harmful practices.

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Morocco: New Violence Against Women Law
by Human Rights Watch, 26 Feb 2018

After more than a decade of advocacy by Moroccan women’s rights organizations, Morocco has adopted Law no. 103-13 on combating violence against women. “Morocco’s law on violence against women finally recognizes some forms of abuse that many women face from their husbands and families,” said Rothna Begum, Middle East and North Africa women’s rights researcher at Human Rights Watch. “But Morocco should address gaps to ensure that all survivors are protected from abuse, and police and prosecutors do their jobs.”

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Malaysia Still on the Wrong Path on Women’s Rights
by The Diplomat, 26 Feb 2018

Malaysia’s record on preserving women’s rights has long been under scrutiny. And so it was once again last week at the 69th session of the UN’s Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) held in Geneva, Switzerland. That there was scrutiny on the issue is no surprise. FGM is far from a fringe issue in Malaysia. Though exact numbers are hard to come by in an overall sense, to use just one example, a 2012 survey in Malaysia found that more than 93 percent of Muslim women surveyed had had the procedure done to them.

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Northern Ireland abortion laws violate women's rights, U.N. body says
by Reuters, 23 Feb 2018

GENEVA - The United Kingdom violates women’s rights in Northern Ireland by unduly restricting their access to abortion, a report by the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) said on Friday. “Denial of abortion and criminalisation of abortion amounts to discrimination against women because it is a denial of a service that only women need. And it puts women in horrific situations,” the committee’s vice-chairwoman, Ruth Halperin-Kaddari, said in a statement.

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US State Department Backtracks on Women’s Rights
by uman Rights Watch, 22 Feb 2018

The US State Department will cut sections dealing with women’s reproductive rights and some types of discrimination, such as against LGBT people, in its annual human rights report, a department spokesperson said today. This action unsurprisingly reflects the Trump administration’s approach to women’s rights – to health, bodily integrity, and to control when they have children – as being disposable.

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