United Nations Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, Radhika Coomaraswamy, took on the practice of young boys being kept as sex slaves by powerful warlords. The practice is known as "bacha bazi," which literally means "boy play." Sex trafficking of both boys and girls has been an increasing concern in Afghanistan.
General Asadollah Amarkhill, security chief of Kunduz province, cites widespread poverty as one of the primary factors that forces boys into compliance with bacha bazi. Coomaraswamy believes that raising awareness and prosecuting those responsible may be the first step in sidelining the practice.
"What I found was, nobody talked about it, everybody said, 'Well, you know, it's been there for a thousand years, so why do we want to raise this now?' That seems to be the general attitude among everyone. But somebody has to raise it and it has to be dealt with" said Coomaraswamy last week in a report to the UN .
Media Resources: Reuters 7/7/08; UNiFEED; Reuters 11/19/07
1/23/2015 #HeForShe Campaign Launches Pilot Effort Aimed at Institutional Equality - The United Nations' gender equality campaign #HeForShe has launched a new program called IMPACT 10X10X10.
United Nations Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson, together with UN Women Executive DirectorPhumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, introduced the one-year pilot effort aimed at encouraging corporations, universities, and governments to play an active role in enhancing women's empowerment and equality in Davos, Switzerland today at the World Economic Forum.
"Women need to be equal participants in our homes, societies, in our governments, and in our workplaces," Watson said.
First introduced in September, HeForShe is a solidarity movement that calls on men and boys to confront gender inequalities that face women and girls globally. . . .
1/22/2015 BREAKING: House to Vote on Abortion Coverage Ban - After they were forced to scrap plans for a 20-week abortion ban, House Republican leaders decided late last night to instead ram through a vote today on a different extreme anti-abortion bill.
House Republicans are now pushing HR 7, a bill promoted as a ban on federal funding of abortion that would actually prevent women from using their own money to purchase health insurance that includes abortion care. . . .
1/22/2015 House Cancels Abortion Ban After GOP Congresswomen Drop Support - House Republicans cancelled plans to vote on a 20-week ban on abortion after Republican Congresswomen removed their names publicly as co-sponsors of the bill.
The vote on the unconstitutional 20-week ban had originally been scheduled for today, the anniversary of Roe v. . . .