Human Rights Publications
Long before it came to the Arab world, spring swept through sub-Saharan Africa. In 1990, Mozambique drafted its first multiparty, democratic constitution. The next year saw multiparty elections in what had been one-party states in Benin, Gabon, and Zambia, as well as the overthrow of Mali’s dictator and, subsequently, the election of new leaders. Every succeeding year brought new steps forward for democracy—in Ghana, Kenya, and the Republic of the Congo in 1992, and elsewhere on the continent in subsequent years. The world only paid attention when South Africa joined the ranks of democratic nations in 1994.
Egypt’s post-revolution constitution does not explicitly prohibit discrimination based on gender or religion. It only recognizes women’s domestic role within a family “founded on religion, morality, and patriotism.” Clerics will have the final word over the new laws.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), approximately 800 women die daily from preventable causes related to pregnancy and childbirth. Almost all of these deaths occur in developing countries, with higher rates for women living in rural areas and among poorer communities.
On December 20, 2012, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Resolution “Intensifying global efforts for the elimination of female genital mutilations.” This resolution is a very important step in the history of the women’s movement in the MENA region, especially at a time when women’s role and rights are being marginalized in a number of Arab countries.
The Global Women's Leadership Initiative (GWLI) is proud to present the Report of the inaugural Women in Public Service Project (WPSP) Institute.
The Global Women’s Leadership Initiative (GWLI) is proud to present the Report of the first Women in Public Service Project (WPSP) Institute held outside of the United States at the Asian University for Women in Chittagong, Bangladesh.
On the occasion of the second anniversary of the Arab Spring, the Middle East Program (MEP) invited a group of experts from the region, Europe, and the United States to contribute to this publication by answering the question, “Has the Arab Spring Lived Up to Expectations?”
In this publication, based on papers presented at a conference on October 2, 2012 at the Wilson Center, the younger, up-and-coming generation in the MENA region describe the current situation on the ground for women and the strategies they can use to organize themselves and move forward in the post-revolutionary phase.
Hanin Ghaddar, a Lebanese public policy scholar at the Wilson Center, writes about the role that voting can play in empowering women in the Middle East. She discusses the need for the Arab Spring to be accompanied by a women's spring.