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Newsletters – 2013
IAW is steadily preparing for the IAW Congress in London. In
the meantime IAW representatives like Irini Nike Sarlis are attending
conferences of the Social Development Committees on 'The World We Want
We seek your attention to a Glossary of Terms for UN Treaty Actions. It explains terms like 'Reservations' and is very handy to consult during CEDAW and CSW. And read an invitation from Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon to attend a Treaty Event at the UN in September 2013.
Also in this newsletter: a new Executive Director for UN Women (from South-Africa); Navy Pillay comments on human rights in Egypt; the ILO is taking action against trafficking in human beings who are deceived into forced labour; there seems to be a change of abortion laws in Latin America; laws for the wombs-for-rent industry in India (this is no science fiction); the trial of the gang rape in December in Delhi - when thousands of women walked the streets in protest - the verdict is expected at the end of August; and last but not least, a study of eminent historians, tracing the early history of gender reforms in India.
The last items for the agenda of the IAW Congress in London are falling into place, and Secretary General Lene Pind urgently reminds IAW organisations and representatives to send their reports to her before August 5, so they can be included in the booklet. The Greek League for Women's Rights has sent out a Press Release on Mob Rapes in Egypt, and IAW President Lyda Verstegen wrote Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon on 'Women’s rights in the UN Secretary General’s report on the post-2015 development agenda'.
Surfing the net we found articles on: an extensive position paper on post 2015, published by UN Women; education of girls in Pakistan; violence against women as a “global health problem”; child marriage in Africa; IANSA's MAP on women, peace and security; acid attacks on women and girls; insecticide in food in India, and a South African NGO is challenging dominant ideas of how to be a man ... Last minute news: IAW Member Soon-Young Yoon, has been elected Chair of the NGO CSW/NY Executive Committee for 2013-2015. Congratulations!
In this newsletter a personal invitation from Bashan Rafique for IAW Congress in London. For all of you who plan to come, watch the deadlines! And maybe we can visit the famous Women's Library in London afterwards, with its new e-future. In this newsletter also the latest news of the issues we will be discussing during Congress: Post-2015, the FAO and CEDAW with seven countries that have NOT yet ratified CEDAW: the USA (!), Iran, Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia, and two small Pacific Islands.
Most of the other news is focussed on refugees. The stream of new ones like those from Syria, where a whole nation is crumbling under civil war, and refugees who have been living in camps for years and years, like in Darfur in Chad. The UN Refugee Agency is doing a wonderful job and needs all the encouragement in the world.Also: World Health Organisation is publishing figures on women and sexual violence; Afghan women and their political future; Ban Ki-Moon deplores the heinous nature of the attacks on a university bus carrying women students and educators and a hospital facility in Pakistan; news of the 23rd session of the Human Rights Council; and education for children with disabilities in India.
This week we received papers for Congress in London. The IAW Executive is currently focussing on the content of Congress. Which idealogical issues will be discussed and what will IAW aim for in her Action Programme for the coming years?
At the UN: an interesting Women's day at the Human Rights Council; a programme tackling the killers of young children like diarrhoea and pneumonia; an important position for expert Ertharin Cousin; and the North-South Prize for two female experts, Monika Hauser and Asma Jahangir.
At the UN and in all continents there is concern about the many victims of rape and the sexual assault of women. Women everywhere are themselves speaking up, writing articles and putting their sometimes biting comments in the social media. Therefore the idea of a 'Barometer of rape' can be helpful and so can the 'Map of the best and the worst places to be a mother'. Both have to be based on research and women can use them as tools in their words of protest against violence of women.
At the end of the newsletter we have a look at the website of the All Pakistan Women’s Association (APWA). And the Rajkot branch of the All India Women's Conference (AIWC) in Gujarat is sending us greetings. Conferences, events, links etc. are like always at the end of this newsletter.
In this newsletter the first preparations for IAW Congress September 9-13 in London. The UN appointed Ms. Lakshmi Puri as temporary new head of UN Women. In the extra attachment you will find an elegant letter of former head Michelle Bachelet, who did us proud during the difficult negotiations of CSW57.
The President of the General Assembly, Mr. Jeremi, made a review of recent decisions at the UN. He also gave a forecast of the schedule for coming months.
Girls are the subject in three articles found in the news : as future feminists, as new young voters and as being supported by young men in their campaign against sex-trafficking.
We take a look at the news of three IAW Affiliates: the Frauenring in Germany, AIWC in India and WEL in Australia.
Other news: protect your world, get vaccinated; the EU is preparing a law on child maintenance abroad; the registration for a Dialogue on International Migration and Development and also for an UNCTAD symposium; dates and registration of the 55th session of CEDAW.
The road to reach the Agreed Conclusions of CSW was a bumpy
one. There was support of governments for eliminating the violence
against women and girls, and progress was made on several issues, but
there were also signs of big problems in the near future.
Like the withdrawal of the resolution on 'Protection of the Family' in the Human Rights Council, with 72 countries supporting non-agreed text. Hélène Sackstein tells us the whole story.
Also, news on the 2015 Development Goals; a UN warning about
drug-resistant tuberculosis; how to prevent dating violence in schools;
the implementation of laws for poor children working in India's mines;
a brutal killing of a social worker and other aid workers in Pakistan;
a video of women from 70 communities in seven countries across Africa
on access to justice. And immediate action you can take is to sign
against flogging rape victims in the Maldives!
As well, news from IAW Affiliates in Pakistan, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK.
IAW is going to the Commission on the Status of Women, 4-15 March 2013, with statements and side events, to be part of the worldwide women's movement in banning violence against women and girls. A look at the list of side events, with all the different aspects women are working on, shows how serious we all are in continuing to tackle this subject. We do hope governments at CSW will listen especially after the 2012 failure, as well as that of 2005 where the theme was also violence against women. The desired outcome for the CSW is, first and foremost, agreed conclusions BUT not at any price. The Beijing agreements must not be weakened.
In this newsletter you will find some special articles from four of our IAW members. Ayesha Javeri, Vice-President of APWA, has written a moving article on 'respect for women' in Pakistan. Natalia Kostus and Soon-Young Yoon are reporting on Post-2015 Sustainable Development, an important topic that cannot be ignored. Gudrun Haupter asks for our attention at a huge side event on Female Genital Mutilation at CSW, with many supporters from all over the world.
We wish all IAW delegates a successful CSW without the frustrations and lack of decisions of 2012!
A good and successful 2013 to you all!
IAW will have a very busy 2013, working towards the outcome of the UN post-2015 consultations. In this newsletter the data on post-2015 has been collected as well as we could, but it still needs your skills at surfing the net, because it gets updated all the time. We do hope you can also follow the thematic consultations in your own country and we sincerely hope you will mail us your impressions.
A maximum of 20 IAW members will be going to the Commission on the
Status of Women - we wish them all the best! In December the UN banned
female genital mutilation (FGM) - the resolution was supported by 194
Women in India walked in their thousands - and signed petitions in protest against rape crimes. A doctor renowned for his work with rape victims returned to eastern DR Congo. UN experts told Tunisia to adopt stronger measures to combat gender discrimination. Parliament in the EU took a step forward in ending trafficking for sexual exploitation. The third meeting of the High Level Panel on Post-2015 will take place in Monrovia, Liberia, with a particular focus on economic transformation.