Friday Links | December 2, 2011

With a female literacy rate of only 14%, girls in rural Balochistan, Pakistan, are desperate for education, but many teachers have left the area due to the dangerous circumstances. In Swabi, Pakistan, girls are determined to stay in school, even though the schools are regularly targeted by the Taliban.

After almost 9 years of war, approximately nine percent of Iraqi women are widows, and often living in extreme poverty and without much aid.

The Shafia case in Canada, where four female family members were murdered in a case that would be classified as an “honour killing,” keeps making headlines. One of the daughters, Sahar, had told someone that when her family found out about her boyfriend, she would be a “dead woman.” May Allah grant them justice.

A South African neurologist and brain specialist went to Iran, looked around and said “the hijab is no obstacle to progress of Iranian women.” Like they have a choice, really!

Gambia’s Fatou Bensouda is to be the new International Criminal Court chief prosecuter.

Plans to criminalize forced marriages in the UK, actually puts women at risk, according to women’s rights activitist Sajda Mughal.

The Guardian features a story on the Afghan socially acceptable bacha posh phenomenon, where girls dress and behave like boys.

At a Tunisian university, “Islamists” and “secularists” clash over the right to wear niqab and whether or not campus should be gender-segregated.

A hundred headscarves are featured in Dutch glossy the Head Book. How original!

Women’s rights law in Afghanistan poorly enforced, two years after its implementation, according to UN report.

Afghan rape victim Gulnaz is freed, after she ‘consented’ to marry her attacker, her cousin’s husband. May Allah protect her and her daughter.

Turkey adopted a charter on the violence against women on the International Day of Elamination of Violence against Women, but still has a long way to go.

On the eve of the Egyptian elections, the Egyptian Gazette wonders: “Where are the Egyptian women?” On Tuesday, Al Ahram concludes that the turn out of women voters was high, but their numbers in parliament are expected to be slim. The process was without many complications, but there were some issues with women wearing a face veil, who refused to uncover their faces.

About 100 Libyan women went to the streets demanding more support from the government for rape victims.

Malaysia introduces women-only taxis, and in Iraqi Kurdistan, the recently introduced women-only taxis are a huge success.

An Afghan woman and her family were sprayed with acid, after her father refused to give her away in marriage to a man who is described to be a “thug.” May Allah ease their suffering.

As for January 4, Saudi women will be able to work in women-only stores and lingerie shops; an estimated 150,000 jobs will be available.

Der Spiegel features an interview with film maker Lina Alabed, who made a documentary featuring two Syrian women (Christian and Muslim) on life and struggles in contemporary Syria and women’s role in the Arab Spring.

A Pakistani woman kills her husband and tries to cook him: this sensational story has been featured on several sites, but the reasons and details differ.

Iranian women activists fight the controversial “polygamy bill”.

In Osun state, Nigeria, the conflict over the right to wear hijab to school is getting more and more heated. A breakdown in law and order in the state is feared.

The Jakarta Globe features a piece on the difficulties (female) migrant workers face when returning to Indonesia, especially if they return early because of a “problem.” It’s not uncommon for them to end up in institutions. May Allah ease their suffering.

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