Female Singer Aired on Afghanistan's Public Television
For the first time in over a decade, a video with footage of a famous Afghan female singer was broadcast on public television. According to BBC News, the footage is seen as a victory for moderates in Afghanistan. The footage of the female performer came just a few weeks after the approval of Afghanistan's new constitution that endorses equal rights for women and men. "In the new constitution, men and women are given the same rights," Deputy Culture and Information Minister Abdul Hamid Mubaiz told Reuters. "There should be no discrimination between man and woman. Therefore, we wanted to have them appear on television to give them the same rights as men."
Afghanistan's Supreme Court has protested the video, stating that they "are opposed to women singing and dancing as a whole...this is totally against the decision of the Supreme Court and it has to be stopped," reports Reuters.
From 1992-1996, during Afghanistan's civil war, the Islamic mujahadeen did not allow images of women to be broadcasted on television. When the Taliban came to power in 1996, they banned television altogether.
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. . . .