March 8, 2011

International Women's Day.

On March 11th, 1911 Clara Zetkin, German politician and a women's rights activist, started up the first International Women's Day.

The theme for the 2011 "International Women's Day" is "Equal access to education, training and science and technology: Pathway to decent work for women." By clicking on the logo below you can access the official site for the celebrations and find out more.
While on this day a number of protests in connection to women's rights and news channels reported on women's issues, we should all be concerned with everyday. 
And there are stories that never make it to prime time.

For example people in Ivory Coast have been long facing violence and social struggle. Since January 2011 violence have again increased in intensity as armed groups have taken the disputed presidential elections from political fight to clashes in the streets.
As a result tens of thousands are at risk. The humanitarian crisis is growing because power and water cuts. Poor sanitation and a medical system that cannot attend to the populations needs, people forced out of their homes, random attacks and killings.

But there is another aspect of the conflict in Ivory Coast. 

Euronews also reports on women being victims of sexual assaults "from forces loyal to Laurent Gbagbo, from armed opposition forces and also from mercenaries of both sides". In an interview with the news channel Gaetan Mootoo (researcher for amnesty International) talks about a hospital that took in 25-30 rape victims a day.

Further more  the attacks are rarely reported as the women do not know the legal formalities and most of all because the attackers are more often than not officials in charge.

Last week 7 women were killed during a protest march while holding tree branches as symbols of peace. 

 Rebecca Blackwell, AP

Today, 4 more were killed during a "march of mourning" for the victims of the post-election conflict.

 Rebecca Blackwell, AP

 We must not allow this to go on.
For information on what you can do to help visit Amnesty International.

But most of all lets join our voices in protest. World leaders and international community should act now.


Cassarah said...

Thank you @mike1909 to draw our attention to facts behind The International Woman´s Day.

There is still too much violance in this world - and women and children are often the first target of many conflicts. We take equal rights for men and woman for granted - but in many, many countries we are far away from this.

Gender equality and equal opportunities is an absolut indispensable step to achieve freedom.
And YES, we should all be concerned with what happens everyday in our very personal environment regarding disrespecting women´s rights.

That´s where we should take a firm stand, first.

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