30 June 2020 - NPWJ News Digest on FGM & women's rights


Activists press for tougher penalties against female genital mutilation in Egypt
Al-Monitor, 29 Jun 2020

Amendments to a number of articles in the Egyptian law incriminating female genital mutilation (FGM) have recently been finalized, toughening penalties against the perpetrator of this atrocious act. On June 14, on the National Day for Elimination of FGM, head of Egypt’s National Council for Women Maya Morsy told reporters during an online press conference that the proposed amendments include widening the criminalization scope and redefining the act of FGM as a form of deformity.

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Women’s rights from the ground up: A strategic approach to securing women’s land rights
ReliefWeb, 26 Jun 2020

Tackling gender bias, whether this bias is intended or unintended, requires all of us to put women front and center in our work on land and natural resource issues. It requires deliberate efforts to acknowledge existing biases and a commitment to addressing them. Invisible gender bias can inform everything from who gets included in community consultations on land, to how laws are written and implemented. It can also impact how we work—from how we decide what issues and activities to focus on, to the tools we use to support and strengthen local leadership.

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Female genital mutilation: Report shows 68,000 victims in Germany
Deutsche Welle, 25 Jun 2020

The amount of women and girls in Germany who have undergone female genital mutilation (FGM) has increased to 68,000, the families minister announced Thursday. The increase, up 44% from the last estimated total calculated in 2017, was attributed to greater immigration from countries where FGM is more common. Up to 15,000 girls in Germany may also be under threat of undergoing the procedure.

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Kenya: Wives’ Property Rights Unprotected
Human Rights Watch, 25 Jun 2020

Many women in Kenya are left without protection to claim their matrimonial property despite relative progress in the laws on paper, Human Rights Watch and the Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA-Kenya) said in a report released today. A recent appeal to the Supreme Court of a June 21, 2020 lower court ruling puts this question before the court. The ruling may provide clarity regarding any ambiguities in the law and guidance on interpreting how assets acquired during marriage should be divided. Kenya should do more to carry out extensive legal reforms that address equal property rights in marriage.

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Burning the cape
Al Jazeera, 25 Jun 2020

In the past few weeks, several Black women came forward on Twitter about the harassment they experienced at Black Lives Matter protests at the hands of Black men. As they put their bodies on the line for the fight against police brutality, Black women are reminded of the ways in which their safety is jeopardised within their own communities. Resulting in them pledging to "burn the capes" they have tirelessly put on to speak out against injustice. These feelings were heightened by the news of 19-year-old Black Lives Matter protester Oluwatoyin "Toyin" Salau's kidnapping, rape and murder. Salau's death prompted larger conversations about Black women's heroism in showing up for the Black collective yet consistently being failed by those they fight for, begging the question: "Who is going to save the hero?"

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