As Taliban soldiers began to flee Kabul about three weeks ago, they kidnapped girls and young women from the area, according to Northern Alliance officials and Kabul residents. They also took women kept as prisoners for disobeying Taliban decrees on behavior and dress. No one knows exactly how many women are missing, but officials estimate that the number is in the hundreds. Now that Taliban rule has ended in Kabul, residents are also speaking out about the horrific acts of violence committed by the Taliban against women there, including rape, torture, and forced marriage. The Northern Alliance claims it is working to establish judicial and police offices to respond to the reports, has found twenty girls kidnapped by Taliban soldiers, and has arrested foreign Taliban soldiers remaining in Kabul after the Talibanís retreat. The Feminist Majority has not been able to verify these claims.
To find out how you can help Afghan women restore their rights and regain their political voice, log on to www.HelpAfghanWomen.com.
Media Resources: Chicago Tribune, 11/27/01; Feminist Majority
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. . . .