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Issues and Analysis

UK summit on sexualized violence: ‘A time warp in the wrong direction’

By Jody Williams. I've spent this past week in London at the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict hosted by UK Foreign Secretary William Hague and UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie. As the hosts noted, it was an historic gathering of ministers and other government representatives, UN officials, the ICRC, and civil society—including our Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict.


Is the World Bank getting more serious about gender inequality?

By Shawna Wakefield, Senior Gender Justice Lead at Oxfam

“The mission of the [World] Bank depends on moving towards gender equality’
- Jim Kim, Head of the World Bank, launch of Voice and Agency, Washington DC


Survivors of sexual violence call for governments to listen

As the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict starts in London, we hear the stories of three victims turned activists


Southern Africa: Disabled women claim their space at summit

Although gender equality has received more limelight in Southern Africa, the plight of women with disabilities poses challenges to the gains made. Women with disabilities make up a sizeable population in the world, with 65-70% of these women living in rural areas and are from low and middle income countries.


Indigenous women unite at UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues

I met Alma Brooks a year ago at the Wabanaki water convergence ceremony in New Brunswick. Alma, a Maliseet grandmother from St Mary’s, NB, is on the frontlines against fracking in her community. A powerful voice, she said: “We have to bring these issues to the UN.  I want the world to know who we are as Maliseet people, the people of the beautiful river, and the struggle for our water and our land.”


Calling out Corruption and Misogyny by Unifying the People

Oppression, especially when undercover and covert, is often perpetuated in the very places where promises are made to eradicate this social ill: in the halls of government, from the mouths of elected or appointed officials, and in the content of public policy, for example. In Saudi Arabia, women are denied basic rights through customary law, such as the right to drive, a practice that openly designates them as second-class citizens. As the world discovered in April, in Nigeria, young girls are abducted without swift or effective government action.


New prostitution laws, same old harms to sex workers

After months of anticipation, the federal government of Canada announced Wednesday that it intends to introduce a new set of adult sex work laws. In a short press conference, Justice Minister Peter MacKay stated, “There will always be an inherent danger in this degrading activity.” Among other things, the new Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act criminalizes the purchase of sexual services, along with benefiting from another person’s work. It also criminalizes advertising sexual services online and communicating for the purpose of selling sexual services in public places, or in any other places where young people can reasonably be expected to be present.


Hopes and fears: Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict

Ahead of tomorrow's Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict, Sanam Naraghi Anderlini questions the presence of government officials from countries with dubious track records, and says ministers should take the advice of women who are most at risk and already working at the frontlines to end all sexual violence.


What We Owe Nigeria's Kidnapped Schoolgirls

People worldwide are calling for action to bring back the kidnapped schoolgirls in Nigeria. But concern for the girls demands that we think carefully about the harmful consequences of proposed solutions – especially those calling for US military intervention.


Women make their voices heard in Ukraine

Women in Ukraine have been fighting for equality for years behind closed doors in small, cramped offices.. So when the Ukrainian revolution took to the streets, it was no surprise that it featured tens of thousands of women.



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