Ms. magazine  -- more than a magazine a movement

SIGN UP FOR MS. DIGEST, JOBS, NEWS AND ALERTS

FEMINIST WIRE NEWSBRIEFS

ABOUT
SEE CURRENT ISSUE
SHOP MS. STORE
MS. IN THE CLASSROOM
FEMINIST DAILY WIRE
FEMINIST RESOURCES
PRESS
JOBS AT MS.
READ BACK ISSUES
CONTACT
RSS (XML)
 
feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

February-07-13

Somalia Jails Alleged Rape Victim

A Somali woman who accused government security forces of rape was sentenced to one year in prison on Tuesday after the court ruled that her accusation was false. A journalist who had interviewed the woman but never published a story was also sentenced to one year in prison.

The Somali court ruled that the woman had not been raped based on the testimony of a midwife who performed a "finger test." According to the Human Rights Watch, the so-called "finger test" is "an unscientific and degrading practice that has long been discredited because it is not a credible test of whether a woman has been raped." Mohamed Mohamud Afrah, the lawyer representing the journalist, told the BBC that he was not allowed to call witnesses or submit witness statements that provided credibility to the woman's claims. Both were convicted of "offending state institutions." The woman's sentence was delayed for a year because she is currently breastfeeding.

The United Nations and the White House have issued statements condemning the decision. In a statement, a spokesperson for U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said that the Secretary-General "urges the Government of Somalia to ensure that all allegations of sexual violence are investigated fully and perpetrators are brought to justice. Above all, it is essential that the rights of the alleged victim and the journalist to a fair and transparent judicial process, including the right of appeal, are fully respected." Victoria Nuland, Department Spokesperson for the White House said in an official statement "Women should be able to seek justice for rape and other gender-based violence without fear of retribution, and journalists in Somalia must be free to work without being subjected to violence and harassment... We have raised our concerns directly with the Somali Government and have urged it to uphold its constitution, including with respect to media freedom, women's rights, and due process of law."

Media Resources: CNN 2/6/2013; BBC 2/5/2013; State Department "Concern About Somalia Rape Case Verdict" 2/5/2013; U.N. "Statement attributable to the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General on Somalia" 2/5/2013


© Feminist Majority Foundation, publisher of Ms. magazine

If you liked this story, consider making a tax-deductible donation to support Ms. magazine.

 

 

Send to a Friend
Their
Your
Comments
(optional)


More Feminist News

10/22/2014 Students Protest Fordham University's Anti-Birth Control Policy - Students at Fordham University are engaged in a battle against the New York City Catholic school's anti-birth control policy. Students for Sex & Gender Equality and Safety (SAGES) has launched a petition drive, calling on Fordham to provide free and confidential access to birth control and STI testing on-campus, free condoms, professional gynecological services at the university, and resources for pregnant women, among other things. . . .
 
10/22/2014 Doctors Warn That Measure 1 Would End In Vitro Fertilization in North Dakota - Doctors at North Dakota's only clinic offering in vitro fertilization (IVF) are speaking out to warn voters that Measure 1, a proposed personhood amendment in the state, would make the practice illegal. Dr. . . .
 
10/21/2014 Afghanistan's New First Lady Advances Women's Issues - Just a few days after moving to the presidential palace, Afghanistan's new First Lady Rula Ghani said that she hopes to encourage greater respect for women. Rula Ghani already broke tradition by participating in her husband, Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai's, campaign for President. . . .