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Lockdown Measures Increase Risks for Women and Girls

For 4 days, Juliet M., a 16-year-old Kenyan, was held captive by a man and sexually assaulted. She was rescued by neighbors and is now being cared for in a safe house in Nairobi. The attacker reportedly said he kidnapped her because he…
Kenyans make their way home before the daily dusk-to-dawn curfew in Nairobi, Kenya, April 6, 2020.
News

Respond to Youth Demands, Gain Respect in the World

(Beirut) – Middle East and North Africa (MENA) governments can respond to the popular demands of the region’s youth for reform by implementing five changes in 2018 to arbitrary, outdated legal systems that infringe upon citizens’ rights and liberties,…
Demonstration outside Parliament on December 6, 2016, with women in white dresses and wrapped in bandages, calling for the repeal of article 522 of the penal code.
Report
Summary On January 25, 2008, during the explosion of post-election violence in Kenya, four men beat and brutally gang-raped Apiyo P., a 53-year-old mother of five. She told Human Rights Watch how the rape continues to affect her:…
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“Maria,” a Ugandan worker, paid $400 in 2013 to an agency in the United Arab Emirates that promised her a job in a mall in Dubai. Instead, the agency placed her as a domestic worker with half the salary she had been promised. Maria told me that her…
A female employer and her children are accompanied by their domestic worker, back right, as they walk through The Avenues, an indoor luxury shopping center in Kuwait City.
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“We women must respect ourselves. You cannot stay with a man drinking until 3 a.m.” This was the response from Mary Wambui, a member of parliament, to recent protests by female legislators and women’s rights activists over accusations that Gideon Mwiti,…
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Committee Assessment Should Lead to Reforms

(Beirut) – Egyptian authorities should act quickly to combat all forms of violence and harassment against women, Human Rights Watch said today. After a spate of sexual assaults during post-election celebrations, President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi told the…
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Top Judicial Body Should Ensure Women’s Full Participation in the Judiciary

(Beirut) - The Egyptian government should act to end discrimination against women in judicial positions in all courts, Human Rights Watch said today.  The Special Council, a governing body of the State Council, on February 22, 2010, overruled a vote taken…
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But US Needs Stronger Message for Repressive Regional Allies

(Cairo) – President Barack Obama’s much-anticipated June 4, 2009, speech to the Muslim world avoided confronting authoritarian governments directly, but sent a welcome message that Washington would not let the prospect of empowering Islamist parties deter…
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A letter to the Human Rights Committee of the United Nations regarding violations of women’s property rights in Kenya to assist in their review of Kenya’s second periodic report on its compliance with the International Covenant on Civil and Political…
Report
Divorced from Justice: Women's Unequal Access to Divorce in Egypt I. SUMMARY.. II. BACKGROUND... Women's Status in Egypt The Egyptian Women's Rights Movement Egypt's Discriminatory Personal Status Laws Domestic Violence in Egypt Absence…
News

Despite Reforms, Women Suffer Discrimination under Legal System

Egypt’s divorce system discriminates against women and undermines their right to end a marriage. In October, the government established family courts but, like no-fault divorce introduced four years earlier, these have failed to tackle ongoing…
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A Joint Letter to Delegates of Kenya's National Constitutional Conference

Nairobi August 2003 To: Delegates of the National Constitutional Conference Dear Delegates: By enacting a new constitution, Kenya has the opportunity to lay a solid foundation for the legal protection of women's equal property rights. The…
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Human Rights Watch's March 4 report, "Double Standards: Women's Property Rights Violations in Kenya," documented the denial of property rights to thousands of Kenyan women, especially widows. Now two critically important United Nations bodies have taken…
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Millions of women in sub-Saharan Africa are robbed, beaten, raped, and evicted-often by their own in-laws-because women are deemed unworthy of equal property rights. A recent Human Rights Watch report, "Double Standards: Women's Property Rights…