Update: Taliban Defends Arrests of Humanitarian Workers
Ignoring international outcry, Taliban rulers defended the arrest of 24 Shelter Now International (SNI) humanitarian workers yesterday. While it has been committing massive human rights abuses against women, minorities, and the Afghan population at large since it came into power in 1996, the Taliban has recently put increasing pressure on international aid workers. The arrests follow the detention of some 56 children accused of involvement with SNI, the ouster of the United Nations Special Mission to Afghanistan from its Kabul offices in June, the imposition of Islamic law on non-Muslim foreigners, and a decree forbidding foreign women from driving cars in Afghanistan. The Afghanistan Support Group, the main organization that coordinates all of the Afghan aid, including aid distributed through U.N. channels, has warned that the Taliban is risking almost all of the aid to Afghanistan with its increasingly restrictive policies.
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. . . .