29 September 2020 - NPWJ News Digest on FGM & Women's Rights


Abortion Without Borders: a bold, feminist reply to Poland’s draconian laws
Open Democracy , 29 Sep 2020

In December 2019, three months before coronavirus was declared a global pandemic, a group of women from across Europe launched a bold, feminist response to Poland’s draconian anti-abortion laws: Abortion Without Borders. Since then, they say they have helped more than 2,200 people with information, funding and practical or logistical help to access safe abortions either by travelling abroad or ordering medical abortion pills online.

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Coronavirus: Girls in Masai tribes suffering grave abuse ‘as teen pregnancies and FGM cases sharply rise'
The Independent , 29 Sep 2020

Girls in Masai tribes are suffering grave abuse and exploitation as teenage pregnancies and cases of female genital mutilation sharply rise amid the coronavirus lockdown, campaigners warned. Educating the Children, a charity which supports young girls in the Masai community, raised fears that when schools finally reopen there will not be enough girls to go back to the classroom due to having been married off in the meantime.

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Most countries failing women and girls with Covid response, UN finds
The Guardian , 29 Sep 2020

Most countries are failing to adequately protect women and girls during the fallout from Covid-19, according to a new UN database that tracks government responses to the pandemic. The global gender tracker has looked at how 206 countries and territories address violence against women and girls, support unpaid care workers and strengthen women’s economic security. Forty-two countries had no policies to support women in any of these areas. Only 25 had introduced some measures in all three categories.

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Young women take a front-line role in Thailand’s protests
The New York Time , 25 Sep 2020

 As tens of thousands of people have gathered for a series of pro-democracy protests in Thailand in recent weeks, their ranks have been dominated by an emerging political force: young women. While the demonstrations are aimed at urging Thailand’s old guard to embrace new ideas, they have also addressed concerns that often don’t make it to the national stage. Many of them are specific to women, including abortion, taxes on menstrual products and school rules that force girls to conform to an outdated version of femininity.

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Afghanistan's first female U.N. envoy warns over women's rights
Reuters, 24 Sep 2020

The Taliban’s stance on women’s rights should concern the world, one of Afghanistan’s top female diplomats has warned, as the government holds power-sharing talks with the Islamist group that once banned girls from going to school. Afghanistan’s first female ambassador to the United Nations Adela Raz said the world had invested heavily in empowering Afghan women after forcing the Taliban from power in 2001, and should pay heed to the hardline group’s views on their future.

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