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A bill to abolish laws that discriminate against women in Pakistan has been presented before Pakistan's parliament. The Protection and Empowerment of Women Bill has received split views from members of Parliament. According to BBC News, conservatives want to keep the current laws because they were made in the name of Islam under General Zia-ul-Haw in 1979.
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"Show me something that is not transformed by the other half of the human race." -- Gloria Steinem
Pakistani Christians have expressed concerns about renewed kidnappings and abuse of women and girls by Muslims in a country still reeling from the recent assassination of a Christian government minister.
The gang-rape of Mukhtaran Mai launched a nine-year court battle that concluded with a verdict by the Supreme Court of Pakistan acquitting all but one of the accused. Her case illustrates how both the formal and informal systems of justice share the same hostility to women who defy social norms and demand justice in cases of rape, says Ayesha khan.
For anyone following the news from Pakistan, the past few weeks have made for grim reading when it comes to violence against women.
Finally the National Assembly passed the Protection Against Harassment at Workplace Bill, 2009 after the Criminal Law Amendment Bill was adopted by the Senate. The latter was part of the comprehensive bill passed by the National Assembly on workplace harassment and had been passed there in November 2009 but due to the opposition of the religious parties in the Senate, it faced some delay.
In spite of advances, discrimination against women persists in laws and in practice. Many women suffer numerous forms of discrimination and limited access to rights, resources and opportunities. This is a moment to celebrate but, simultaneously, a time to mourn for women. Celebrate, for finding a better place and entity in the bureaucratic system of the UN.
In 1946, the Department of Public Information (DPI) was established by the General Assembly through Resolution 13(1). DPI has employed many different forms of communication tools such as radio, television, and the Internet to promote greater global awareness and to better convey the mission and work of the UN.
Sam Cook & Felicity Hill
Sam CookTHIS ISSUE FEATURES:
On 7th March, 2011 the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) held a seminar on the occasion of the
2011 International Women's Day. This is an extract from the Report from that event.