There will be a full investigation into the case of two convicted rapists who were given a pardon by Afghan President Hamid Karzai in May. The victim, Sara, discovered that the men had been released from prison when she they saw them walking in their village and she has since been forced into hiding with her husband, Dilawar, according to BBC News.
In 2005, Sara was brutally gang-raped, knifed with a bayonet in her private parts, and left to walk home half-naked after she and her husband publicly spoke out about their missing son, who had been forcibly taken by armed men, according to The Independent. Three rapists were sentenced to 11 years in prison, a sentence that was upheld by Afghanistan's Supreme Court.
Norah Niland, Chief Human Rights Officer of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan said in a press release, "while there appears to be conflicting reports on the circumstances of the release of these prisoners, whatever the circumstances, this is clearly an injustice against the victim, the victims' family and all Afghan women. Such injustice can only promote a culture of impunity for violence perpetrated against women."
Media Resources: BBC News 8/27/08; The Independent 8/24/08; Statement of Norah Niland 8/26/08
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. . . .