In Iraq, women ‘are the battlefield’

In Iraq, women ‘are the battlefield’

An Iraqi activist says she has seen firsthand how women’s bodies have become collateral damage in the fighting in Iraq, where more than 5,600 civilians have been killed in violence this year. In addition to constant shelling and terror, there are reports of torture, beheading, and even crucifixion. As the violence rages on, refugees have survived the unthinkable. Left, civilians flee violence in the city of Mosul in July. Photo by ActiveStills. Read More »

Why soldiers rape — and when they don’t — in diagrams

Why soldiers rape — and when they don’t — in diagrams

A main part of our work here at WMC’s Women Under Siege has been to document specifically how sexualized violence has been utilized against women and men in conflicts—what are the reasons behind it and how do they differ from country to country, region to region, group to group? We've got some new graphics depicting how rape is used in war...and when it isn't. Read More »

The smartest way to end sexualized violence in war

The smartest way to end sexualized violence in war

Janet Benshoof, president and founder of the Global Justice Center, offers another perspective on the use of rape as a “tactic” of war: putting the focus on states and stigmatizing their actions or inactions before other states. Time and again, she says, stigmatization has been shown to deter the use of rape, or other tactics, in war. Rape is a breach of the Geneva Conventions, at left. Photo by UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Read More »

No more jasmine: A Syrian-American reflects on Aleppo

No more jasmine: A Syrian-American reflects on Aleppo

Before the uprising against Assad started more than three years ago in Syria, Aleppo was truly the city that never slept. In the mornings, you could smell the sweet scent of jasmine, mixed with the aroma of Turkish coffee. But the city’s landscape has drastically changed. In the media, Aleppo has been dubbed “the world’s most dangerous city”—and for good reason. Photo by Freedom House. Read More »

In Iraq, women ‘are the battlefield’

In Iraq, women ‘are the battlefield’

By — August 12, 2014
Yanar Mohammed’s voice is shaky when she picks up the phone. It is noticeable. She apologizes and takes a quick second to compose herself. She has been unnerved by something she just saw on television. more »
Indian government fails acid attack survivors, activists say

Indian government fails acid attack survivors, activists say

By — August 8, 2014
In India, the battle for justice is on many fronts for women who survive acid attacks. They continue, in part, because the government has failed to regulate the sales of acid and police have repeatedly failed to even take reports of attacks. So beyond the punishment of specific perpetrators, activists and survivors are fighting to obtain compensation from the government—and rehabilitation. more »
The long and lonely fight: Q&A with Indian tribal rights activist Soni Sori

The long and lonely fight: Q&A with Indian tribal rights activist Soni Sori

By — July 29, 2014
In a crowded auditorium at a conference on gender-based violence in Delhi this month, a frail woman sits silently. When the discussion shifts to atrocities on tribal women, she takes center stage. When she speaks, the crowd listens in silence. Soni Sori, a schoolteacher, speaks about the fate of women in Chhattisgarh, an Indian state that has been engulfed in violence and conflict. more »
Why soldiers rape — and when they don’t — in diagrams

Why soldiers rape — and when they don’t — in diagrams

By — July 25, 2014
Men came while she was working in her field. Twice. Like so many women I met a few months ago in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the woman telling her story explained how men wearing uniforms appeared as she worked her land and dragged her to a tree and tied her to it, raping her, cutting her, terrifying her. They wanted her money and they wanted her gone from her field. more »
Giving women a fair fight in the US military

Giving women a fair fight in the US military

By — July 18, 2014
It’s unfathomable to think that in 2014 half the global population will be prevented from a full range of occupations because of their gender. This kind of prejudice is broadly seen as a throwback to a distant and unenlightened era—which is why the findings of a recent study of the best U.S. colleges was surprising to many. more »

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