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MENA Women: Opportunities and Obstacles in 2014

In Celebration of International Women’s Day 2014

"Best Practices": Progressive Family Laws in Muslim Countries

The goal of this project is to produce a concise, brief document that indicates “best practices” in the application and implementation of family law in Muslim countries. Thereby, we wish to make the positive developments that are occurring in the Muslim world’s legislative and judicial practice better known and available to other states and practitioners that are grappling with the same issues. We hope this overview will be helpful to lawmakers, legal practitioners, and civil society groups. Publication available in English, Dari, and Arabic.

Upcoming UN Meeting Revives Hopes for U.S.-Iran Dialogue

UNGA provides a convenient venue for foreign leaders to interact and has special utility for countries such as Iran that are estranged from the United States and thus have no embassies in Washington. With the election of a pragmatic new Iranian president, Hassan Rouhani, suspense is building again. Will Rouhani shake hands with U.S. President Barack Obama at the annual luncheon for heads of state? Or, at a minimum, will Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif—a U.S.-educated former ambassador to the UN—chat in the hallway with Secretary of State John Kerry?

The Tally

The Syrians created a crisis by using chemical weapons in a massive attack on August 21, President Barack Obama threatened force but then vacillated, and Russian President Vladimir Putin, recognizing both Obama's strengths and his weaknesses, stepped up, grabbed center stage, and inserted himself directly into a process he'd long avoided. It shows that the right combination of pain and gain is what creates openings and drives big decisions.

The Syrian Refugee Crisis is Pushing Lebanon to the Brink

The Syrian refugee issue in Lebanon is threatening to become the real humanitarian crisis in the region. There are more Syrian refugees in Lebanon than in any other country in the region. Straddled by a weak economy, domestic political infighting, and internal divisions over the crisis in Syria, Lebanon is finding it hard to cope with the evolving problem inside its borders. In the absence of a quick and sustained international support, the refugee issue in Lebanon could become a full blown crisis with domestic and regional implications for Lebanon.

The Women's Movement in Iran

In this chapter from The Iran Primer, Haleh Esfandiari provides an historical overview of the women's movement in Iran.

Bahraini Human Rights Activist Nabeel Rajab to Receive 2011 Ion Ratiu Democracy Award

Nabeel Rajab, a leading human rights activist and president of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights, will receive the 2011 Ion Ratiu Democracy Award, presented annually by the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

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