According to Telegraph, the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice posted a justification of the arrest on its website, saying, "It's not allowed for any woman to travel alone and sit with a strange man and talk and laugh and drink coffee together like they are married. All of these are against the law and it's clear it's against the law. First, for a woman to work with men is against the law and against religion. Second, the family sections at coffee shops and restaurants are meant for families and close relatives."
Human rights groups say that Yara's alleged violations of Islamic law do not justify her treatment in the hands of the commission. After more than five hours with the police, Yara was forced to sign a confession saying that she had been in "illegal seclusion with a man who is not her husband," according to the Associated Press. Telegraph reports that Yara was strip-searched. Yakin Erturk, UN human rights expert, said Yara "was subjected to humiliating an illegal treatment before she was released."
The Saudi religious police have been criticized for its treatment of women before, in the case of arresting a woman for "witchcraft" earlier this month and for sentencing a rape victim last year to 200 lashes for being alone in a car with a man who was not related to her.
Media Resources: Associated Press 02/19/08, 02/14/08; Arab News 02/20/08; Telegraph 02/20/08; Feminist Daily Newswire 02/14/08, 11/28/07
10/31/2014 Federal Judge Exempts Another Catholic University from Birth Control Coverage - A federal judge ruled Tuesday that Ave Maria University, a Catholic university in Florida, does not have to comply with federal rules meant to ensure that covered employees can exercise their right to obtain birth control at no cost.
The Affordable Care Act requires all new health insurance plans to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives - such as the pill, emergency contraceptives, and IUDs - without charging co-pays, deductibles or co-insurance. . . .
10/31/2014 Women of Color in Tennessee Are United in Opposition to Amendment 1 - Just days before the general election in Tennessee, a coalition of community leaders, clergy, and advocates led a press conference encouraging women of color to vote no on Amendment 1, a dangerous and far-reaching measure on the state's ballot.
SisterReach, a grassroots organization focused on "empowering, organizing, and mobilizing women and girls in the community around their reproductive and sexual health to make informed decisions about themselves," organized the press conference "to call attention to the unique concerns Black and poor communities throughout Shelby County and across the state of Tennessee face on a daily basis" and to emphasize how the upcoming election "could further limit [black women's] reproductive, economic, political, and social autonomy."
"We assemble today to impress upon black women and women of color, many of whom are heads of households, to get out and vote," said SisterReacher Founder and CEO Cherisse Scott at the event.
SisterReach has been educating voters about the particularly dangerous impact of Amendment 1 on women of color. . . .
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1.
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .