President Karzai Urges Islamists to Ban Forced Marriages
Afghan President Hamid Karzai is urging Islamists to end forced marriages and to fight violence against women. At a meeting of religious leaders and government employees, Karzai stated that his government will continue to work for women’s rights, reports Agence France Presse. Karzai also announced that Afghan officials will be sent on fact-finding trips to study how local commanders deal with women’s rights and if “any wrongdoing is found” the Afghan government will take action.
Karzai pointed to a fatwa (religious decree) that was recently issued by Saudi Arabian scholars stating that forced marriage of girls goes against Islam. According to the Daily Times of Pakistan, girls aged 12 and younger are still given in marriage to end tribal disputes in some parts of Afghanistan.
4/15/2014 Virginia Bishops Advocate More Abortion Restrictions for Poor Women - Using the Medicaid expansion debate as a platform, the Virginia Catholic Conference issued a statement Friday calling for the repeal of a Virginia law that allows state funding of abortion care for Medicaid recipients in situations where the fetus exhibits a "gross and totally incapacitating physical deformity" or a "gross and totally incapacitating mental deficiency."
Bishop Francis DiLorenzo of the Diocese of Richmond and Bishop Paul Loverde of the Diocese of Arlington authored the statement which urges Virginia lawmakers to act to expand Medicaid to cover more of Virginia's poor. . . .