Women from Afghanistan, Iran, North and East Syria and Lebanon welcome 8 March International Women’s Day with demands towards equality and democracy.
Afghanistan Women’s Political Participation Network (AWPPN) called in a statement for “immediate action” by the world against the Taliban.
“The silence of the international community over the Taliban’s crimes is a seal of approval for the oppression of women and is against the principles of human rights.” AWPPN said.
Women in Iran also released a statement posing their demands from the Islamic republic, as protests against compulsory hijab laws continue in their sixth month following the death of young Iranian Kurdish woman Jîna (Mahsa) Amînî in the custody of the morality police. Protesters remain united under the Kurdish slogan, “Jin, Jîyan, Azadî” (Woman, Life, Freedom).
Iranian women also demanded the abolition of the death sentence, the unconditional release of all political prisoners, and the repeal of compulsory hijab laws.
The Central Command of the Free Women’s Units-Star (YJA-Star) declared that in all cases they will be the voice of Kurdish people, and further women’s resistance. “Our struggle is against a mentality of genocide and plunder, we pledge to protect the will of the people and human values in the mountains of Kurdistan,” they said.
Tunisian women continue their fight to protect their rights, Tunisian feminist activist Mounira Balguti told the all-women news agency Jin News. Balguti said women’s rights appear only on paper in the North African country. “Women’s rights have been especially threatened in Tunisia after the 25 July referendum. The conditions for a democratic government were abolished,” she said.
Mari El-Dibis, the head of Equality Association Werde Botrus, pointed to the detrimental impact of civil unrest on the lives of Lebanese women.
Women’s movements went into a decline after the unrest began, but they have been slowly regaining their power since the uprising in October 2019, El-Dibis said.
“Today, Lebanese women have heavy burdens on their shoulders,” she said. “We work to empower [Lebanese women] via awareness-raising and campaigning in all regions.”
Half of working age women in the country are unemployed, according to El-Dibis.