Women's Rights Magazine Editor Arrested in Afghanistan
The editor of an Afghan women's rights monthly magazine was arrested on Saturday in Kabul. Ali Mohaqiq Nasab, the male editor of Haqooq-i-zan, which means Women’s Rights, was accused of publishing articles that went against Islamic teachings.
One of the articles that drew the ire of the conservative Supreme Court raised questions about execution and other severe punishments for adultery, thievery, and murder under Sharia law, reports Reuters. Nasab was arrested at the urging of Mohaiuddin Baluch, who serves as a religious advisor to President Hamid Karzai, according to the Associated Press.
“This is of grave concern,” said Eleanor Smeal, president of the Feminist Majority Foundation. “The United States is telling the world that the US is supporting women’s rights and democracy in Afghanistan. Freedom of speech is fundamental to women’s rights and democracy.”
"We are disturbed by this arrest, which reflects a recent pattern of deteriorating press freedom conditions in Afghanistan,” said Ann Cooper, Executive Director of the Committee to Protect Journalists, a New York-based non-profit organization that promotes freedom of the press. "We call for the immediate release of Ali Mohaqiq Nasab. Journalists should not be jailed because of their work," Cooper said in a statement issued Monday.
12/9/2013 Mixed Results for Afghanistan's Anti-Violence Against Women Law - The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released their annual report on violence against women in Afghanistan yesterday, revealing mixed results of the country's Elimination of Violence against Women Law.
"A Way to Go: An Update on Implementation of the Law on the Elimination of Violence against Women in Afghanistan [PDF]," found that there was a 28 percent increase in reports of violence against women from 2012 to 2013 , but only 17 percent of those were prosecuted under EVAW - a small 2 percent increase from last year.
The law, which was issued by the executive decree of President Hamid Karzai in 2009, criminalizes 22 acts of violence against women and specifies punishment for perpetrators. . . .