Sunday, April 19, 2009

Wafa Sultan Talks On Sharia Law

A women named Wafa Sultan speaks about Sharia law, and how some parties are trying to bring this cultural aspect into other parts of the world. I personally don't believe alot of what some state is 'islamic' law is actually that. Its a cultural aspect of what they came from.

I hope that more people listen to Wafa Sultan as she speaks about how Sharia Law is trying to move into other parts of the world.....and needs to be stopped.

Yemen law banning child marriage?

The Associated Press had an article about Islamists fight Yemen law banning child marriage.

I truly had a hard time wrapping my mind around the thinking of how restricting child marriages is somehow 'westernizing' them. They do nothing to help these girls when in trouble, and when their 'husbands' go against agreements. They allow pedophilla to go on, and there is no concern over the health and well being of children. Being raped and having children at such a young age is show to HARM them, but of course all kinds of excuses are given to justify it instead.

In Yemen, poverty is the main reason families marry off young daughters, to get bride-prices up to several hundred dollars. Local traditions encourage the practice out of a belief a young bride can be shaped into an obedient wife, bear more children and be kept away from temptation.

The weak government relies on support from tribal leaders and Islamists so is reluctant to take action on customs they support. Yemen once set 15 as the minimum marriage age, but parliament eliminated it in the 1990s, saying parents should decide when a daughter marries.

Legislator Sheik Mohammed al-Hazmi, one of the most ardent opponents of a minimum marriage age, says the new law is a "Western plot aimed at Westernizing our culture."

"The West wants to teach us how to marry, conceive and divorce. This is cultural colonization that we reject," he told AP.

Its amazing the tactics of diversion they take to avoid the real reasons. The West telling them when to marry, conceive and divorce? Hardly. Its about basic human rights that they fail recognize. They can't admit they refuse to control perverts that lust after young girls - NOT WOMEN - GIRLS!

The girl who spoke with the AP is now living at the Alrahma Foundation for Human Development, an orphanage in the capital, San'a.

She first came to the orphanage when her father died, when she was 11. She had not yet moved in with her husband, because the agreement had been that she would do so at puberty.

But she said her brother showed up at the orphanage and persuaded her to go with him, telling her they would seek a court annulment of the marriage. Instead, he took her to her husband's house in the southern town of Thammar for a bribe of about $200, the girl said. About nine months later, the husband forced her into sex, she said.

She got a chance to break away when she developed stomach and vocal cord problems last year and her husband sent her to San'a for treatment. She escaped from the house where she was staying and fled to the orphanage 10 months ago.

Today, at 13, she is learning to read and write and beginning to think about the future.

"I want to become a businesswoman," she said, two tiny dimples lighting up her thin face.

Yep! They refuse to control or do anything about the above type of situations, but would rather blame the WEST for placing their SINS out into the open. Claiming we want to change them. Nope! How about humanize the face of the oppression of these children. Yemen law banning Children Marriage? Lets hope!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Worldwide Women's Human Rights

Organizations across the globe are coming together to help women get basic human rights that are not given to them.

girl project

The Girl Effect

Angry Afghan Shiites Swarm Women's Protest

Afghan Women's Rights were brought into the spotlight recently by a very small and brave group of Afghan Women.
Women protesters against 'marital rape' law
Kabul (AP) - A group of some 1,000 Afghans swarmed a demonstration of 300 women protesting against a new conservative marriage law on Wednesday. The women were pelted with small stones as police struggled to keep the two groups apart.

The law, passed last month, says a husband can demand sex with his wife every four days unless she is ill or would be harmed by intercourse -- a clause that critics say legalizes marital rape. It also regulates when and for what reasons a wife may leave her home alone.

Women's rights activists scheduled a protest Wednesday attended by mostly young women. But the group was swamped by counter-protesters -- both men and women -- who shouted down the women's chants.

It seems men and women of Afghanistan once again wish to use their cultural beliefs, and call them part of the muslim religion. The strange part? The women were protesting a new law, applying only to Shiites, that obliges women to sleep with their husbands on demand and bars them from leaving the home without their husbands’ permission. Only Shiites?

According to the New York Times:

The young women stepped off the bus and moved toward the protest march just beginning on the other side of the street when they were spotted by a mob of men. “Get out of here, you whores!” the men shouted. “Get out!” The women scattered as the men moved in. “We want our rights!” one of the women shouted, turning to face them. “We want equality!” The women ran to the bus and dove inside as it rumbled away, with the men smashing the taillights and banging on the sides.

Three Cheers for these Afghan women and their families that support them! This is hardly a faith issue, but more of an oppression issue. Men seem so threatened by this, and if any of those women are harmed......they will be heros!

Unfortunately, I’m afraid Zara is wrong: She’s not in the majority, at least in Afghanistan. Polls show that men and women alike in Afghanistan mostly don’t believe in equal rights. Women are a bit more likely to support gender equality than men, but only a bit more. The best predictor of whether someone favors women’s rights in Afghanistan isn’t whether the person is a man or woman, but whether the person lives in the city or the countryside. People in the cities are far more sympathetic to equal rights — in other words, it’s a sign of Kabul’s progress that the demonstration happened at all. It would never have been imaginable in, say, rural Zabul or Kandahar provinces, not least because the women would never have been allowed out of their homes.

I’m enormously impressed by the courage of these women, but I do worry about a backlash. Afghans are very nationalistic, and the women today were denounced as pawns of Christians and foreigners. Remember that during the first Gulf War in 1991, Saudi women held a demonstration to demand the right to drive, and the protest attracted enormous attention. Yet in the end it so antagonized and frightened men that it probably set back and delayed the cause of women’s rights in Saudi Arabia. I hope that’s not the case here, because Afghanistan can’t develop economically and achieve stability so long as girls are kept home and women are mostly barred from the work force.

The start of these Women's Protests will be the only way to give women of this area some basic human rights. Its the men and the culture that wish to strip them of this, and those women are being cheered on all across the globe!

Angry Afghan Shiites Swarm Women's Protest as the rest of the world CHEER THEM ON!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Saudi Child Bride

CNN Stated:

According to the lawyer, the girl's father arranged the marriage in order to settle his debts with the man, who is "a close friend" of his.

The judge did ask for a pledge from the husband, who was in court, not to consummate the marriage until the girl reaches puberty, according to al-Jutaili.

The judge ruled that when the girl reaches puberty, she will have the right to request a divorce by filing a petition with the court, the lawyer said.

The reason for this verdict?

The mother's lawyer, Abdullah al-Jutaili, said the judge found that the mother -- who is separated from the girl's father -- is not the legal guardian, and therefore cannot represent her daughter.

It seems that even if the government says you can't do this (child marriages) the judges can outrule the government, and allow it anyway.

In an interview with CNN, al-Huwaider said the Saudi government has signed international agreements involving children's and human rights, "and they know that this is very harmful to the kingdom's image. There is a strong wave to teach and spread human rights here in Saudi Arabia, but we all know that there are two players behind the scenes: a movement that wants reform and change to better the kingdom and another movement that wants to keep us backward and in the dark ages."

The Saudi Justice Ministry has not commented.

The Saudi Information Ministry forwarded CNN to the government-run Human Rights Commission.

Zuhair al-Harithi, a spokesman for the commission, said his organization is fighting against child marriages. "Child marriages violate international agreements that have been signed by Saudi Arabia and should not be allowed," he said.

Al-Harithi added that he did not have specific details about this case, but his organization has been able to stop at least one other child marriage.

So in other words they can sign laws into practice, but that doesn't matter. They can't enforce. BOY their laws are good huh? You have to wonder about the word of the husband, and then the word of the Judge once this child comes to puberty!

My thoughts and prayers are with this child bride from Saudi Arabia. If actions speak louder than words she doesn't stand a chance.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Child brides invade the classrooms

Child brides invade the classrooms according to NDTV

About three weeks to go for class X board exams, an exuberant group of girls can't afford to waste any time. All of them have lost precious years of childhood in a marriage that thrust upon them responsibilities far beyond their age. Now none of them wears the mangalsutra and have broken the fetters to go back to school and rewrite their own destiny.

I hope they are able to pass those exams, and those child brides have better future!

Child Marriage in Afghanistan: 7-yr-old bride, 17-yr-old groom

Child Marriage in Afghanistan: 7-year-old bride, 17-year-old groom. That children doesn't even know what is going on. You seriously have to wonder about this cultures. They are placing children into adult situations.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Child Brides: Tiringo

Here is a series of videos about Child Brides

57% of girls in Ethiopia are married before they reach their 18th birthday. In the first of a series of three short documentaries, Tiringo, married at age 6, explains how early marriage prevented her from attending school.

Child Brides: Tiringo

Child Brides: Alameye

In the Addis Ababa fistula hospital, Alameye, forced into marriage at 16, is recovering from surgery to repair a condition virtually unheard of in the West. The second in a series of three short documentaries examines how early marriage affects a girls health. In Ethiopia, there are 9000 new cases of fistula each year and an estimated 100,000 women go untreated due to a lack of resources. Despite her terrible ordeal at such a young age, Alameye is one of the lucky ones.

These Child Bride Series were made by Kim Haughton. Kim Haughton is an award winning photojournalist based in Dublin Ireland.

Her work has appeared in publications worldwide including:
The Guardian, The Observer, Boston Globe, London Times, Irish Times, Daily Mail, Daily Telegraph, Financial Times, TIME and Newsweek.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Child Brides in Ethiopia

This Audio Slideshow was aired on NPR's All Things Considered on January 18, 2007 by Brenda Wilson.

Big Thanks for NPR and Brenda Wilson for this report on Child Brides in Ethiopia.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Bride Price for Children

The Bride Price: Consequences of Child Marriage Worldwide is a video containing moving images by Stephanie Sinclair - recipient of the 2007 UNICEF Photo of the Year - on the many issues of child marriage. Sinclair's photos include compelling images of child brides in Afghanistan, Ethiopia and India. Sinclair's previous work on child marriage includes a photo essay of Afghani child brides published in The New York Times.

Want to Do More?

Check out the ICRW advocacy page for more information on the consequences of child marriage for girls and boys and U.S. international development assistance, and learn what you can do to make a difference.

The Bride Price Video Link

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Child Marriages: What we Know

Who is affected?

More than 100 million girls in the developing world will be married during the next 10 years.

Although the definition of child marriage includes boys, most children married under the age of 18 years are girls.

While the practice has decreased globally over the last 30 years, it remains common in rural areas and among the poorest of the poor.

In Southern Asia, 48%—nearly 10 million—of girls are married before the age of 18.

In Africa, 42% of girls were married before turning 18.

In Latin America and the Caribbean, 29% of girls are married by age 18.

What are the effects of child marriage?

Child brides are more likely than unmarried girls to die younger, suffer from health problems, live in poverty and remain illiterate.

Child Marriage Around the World
Percentage of girls marrying before the age of 18
1 Niger 76.6
2 Chad 71.5
3 Bangladesh 68.7
4 Mali 65.4
5 Guinea 64.5
6 Central African Republic 57.0
7 Nepal 56.1
8 Mozambique 55.9
9 Uganda 54.1
10 Burkina Faso 51.9
11 India 50.0
12 Ethiopia 49.1
13 Liberia 48.4
13 Yemen 48.4
15 Cameroon 47.2
16 Eritrea 47.0
17 Malawi 46.9
18 Nicaragua 43.3
18 Nigeria 43.3
20 Zambia 42.1

Source: ICRW 2007

Premature Pregnancy: Child brides almost always bear children before they are physically - or emotionally - ready.

Maternal Mortality: Girls younger than 15 are five times more likely to die during child birth or pregnancy than older women. Pregnancy-related deaths are the leading cause of mortality for girls aged 15 to 19 worldwide.

Infant Mortality: Mortality rates for babies born to mothers under age 20 are almost 75% higher than for children born to older mothers. The children that survive are more likely to be premature, have a low birth weight, and are more at risk for contracting HIV/AIDS.

Health Problems: Premature childbirth can lead to a variety of health problems for mothers, including fistula, a debilitating condition that causes chronic incontinence. Girls with fistula are often abandoned by their husbands and ostracized by society. There are approximately 2 million girls living with fistula, and 100,000 new cases every year.

HIV/AIDS: Married girls may be more likely to contract sexually transmitted disease, including HIV/AIDS, than unmarried girls. Young girls are more physically susceptible to STD's, have less access to reproductive education and health services and are often powerless to demand the use of contraception.

Illiteracy: Child brides are often pulled out of school and denied further education. Their children are also more likely to be illiterate.

Poverty: Child brides - already poor - are isolated and denied education and employment opportunities, making it difficult for them break out of the cycle of poverty.

Abuse and Violence: Child brides are more likely to experience domestic abuse, and violence than their peers who marry later.

Mental Health: Violence and abuse can lead to post-traumatic stress and depression.

Isolation and Abandonment: Child brides are often isolated from their peers and abandoned if they develop health problems like fistula.

What can be done to prevent child marriage?


Girls with a secondary education are up to six times less likely to marry young compared to girls with little or no education.

Education delays the age at which a woman marries.

Education provides an alternative opportunity for girls other than marriage.

Education increases socio-economic status and earning potential for girls.

Employment/Poverty Reduction

The world's poorest countries have the highest rates of child marriage. Families often marry girls off to lessen their economic burden and provide a future for their daughters.

Girls from poor families are about twice as likely to marry young than girls from better-off households.

Girls who earn a wage may be seen as an economic asset, not a burden, by their families.

Girls who earn a wage are less dependent on others to provide for them.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Percentage of girls marrying before the age of 18

Child Marriage Around the World
Percentage of girls marrying before the age of 18
1 Niger 76.6
2 Chad 71.5
3 Bangladesh 68.7
4 Mali 65.4
5 Guinea 64.5
6 Central African Republic 57.0
7 Nepal 56.1
8 Mozambique 55.9
9 Uganda 54.1
10 Burkina Faso 51.9
11 India 50.0
12 Ethiopia 49.1
13 Liberia 48.4
13 Yemen 48.4
15 Cameroon 47.2
16 Eritrea 47.0
17 Malawi 46.9
18 Nicaragua 43.3
18 Nigeria 43.3
20 Zambia 42.1

Source ICRW: 2007

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Child Brides: Stolen Lives

Here is a preview of a program on PBS Now about Child Brides.

Enjoy this special preview of the hour-long NOW special airing Friday, October 12 (check local listings). In the show, NOW travels to Niger, Guatemala, and India to expose the tragic consequences of early marriage, and the hope behind efforts to end the global practice.

Maria's Journey

For Educators
"Child Brides: Stolen Lives" is a one-hour documentary from NOW, the weekly newsmagazine on PBS. NOW's production team traveled to Niger, India and Guatemala to report on a global custom that devastates lives and keeps communities from prospering.

They need to stop child marriages.