In a public ceremony watched by thousands, an Afghan woman and her mother were lashed for "immoral behavior."
The daughter was convicted of "immoral behavior" for having a sexual affair and received 100 lashes. Since she was unmarried, the daughter was spared the Taliban's punishment for adultery, which is stoning to death. The mother was charged with having knowledge of her daughter's affair and failing to report it to the Taliban. She received 39 lashes. Both women cried with each strike of the lash.
After beating the women, Taliban official Mullah Mohammed Sadik denounced Western opposition to the Taliban's treatment of women and girls and declared that the Taliban's laws are necessary to protect women's honor.
On Thursday, President Clinton had denounced the Taliban, saying "I think it is one of the worst examples of systematic human rights abuses in the world today, and a terrible perversion of Islam."
In direct response to Clinton's remarks, Afghan envoy in Islamabad Maulvi Saeed-ur-Rahman Haqqani said that Clinton "has no knowledge about our religion" and claimed that the Taliban "has ensured protection of life and honour to the womenfolk in Afghanistan in accordance with Islamic principles. Hundred per cent Afghan women are happy with Taliban policies."
Media Resources: Reuters, AP and NNI - April 15-17, 1999
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .