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  • The double oppression of Gaza’s women

    Women in Gaza face serious societal constrains at home, but also an ongoing siege that limits their freedom of movement and occupation and alarmingly increases the rate of violence against them. The untold price women pay for Israel’s closure policy. By Aya Zinatey Whenever the issue of Palestinian women in Gaza and the impact the closure has on them comes up, Gaza’s traditional societal structure comes up as well, and there’s a dilemma: how can we talk about the impacts of the closure without mentioning the societal injustice these same women suffer from? I suggest looking at the occupation and…

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  • +972 writer Samah Salaime given award for work on gender equality

    Samah Salaime, of +972 and its Hebrew sister site Local Call, is honored for her activism advancing women's rights in Israel by Radio a-Shams. +972 Magazine and Local Call blogger Samah Salaime received an award last week from Radio A-Shams in Nazareth for her work promoting the status of Arab women and gender equality in Israeli society, as well as for the struggle against violence. Salaime received the award at a ceremony marking 12 years since the establishment of Radio A-Shams, the most prominent radio station among the Arab sector in Israel. Salaime's writing for both +972 and its Hebrew…

  • Israeli, Palestinian women protest on both sides of Israeli checkpoint

    Ahead of International Women's Day, Israeli and Palestinian women demonstrate against the occupation. Israeli security forces use tear gas to break up the protest. Text by Yael Marom Photos by Anne Paq, Ahmad Al-Bazz / Roughly 500 Israeli citizens (of both Jewish and Palestinian backgrounds) along with around 1,000 Palestinian women (from the West Bank), demonstrated on both sides of the Qalandia checkpoint Saturday afternoon. The protest was meant to demonstrate Israeli-Palestinian solidarity in opposing the occupation, ahead of International Women’s Day on Sunday. The 1,000 Palestinian women marched from the Qalandia Refugee Camp toward the checkpoint that separates Jerusalem…

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  • PHOTOS: African women march for their rights in Tel Aviv

    Over 1,000 women asylum seekers and their children on Wednesday protested against a new detention center and called on the Israeli government to recognize their rights as refugees. The march proceeded from south Tel Aviv to UNHCR offices and the U.S. embassy in an action following last week's general strike and mass protests. Photos by: Keren Manor, Yotam Ronen, Oren Ziv Click for +972′s full coverage of asylum seekers in Israel                      

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  • Beit Shemesh "flash mob" antagonistic and irrelevant

    +972's Ami Kaufman writes that he found "particularly heart-warming" the flashmob in Beit Shemesh, noting that it shows the ultra-Orthodox "who wears the pants in this town."  I'm guessing it's obvious who wears the pants: the woman in the middle front row.   I cannot identify her, but I think it is safe to guess that is the choreographer herself, since everyone is looking at her.  And somewhere in there is Miri Shalem, the organizer.  It is also worth noting that she has organized women-only "disco nights" (as reported in Hebrew by Ma'ariv/NRG in 2004) in neighboring Ramat Beit Shemesh…

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  • Israelis should self-reflect before criticizing Haredi segregation

    Preface Before I begin, I would like to preface with a few points. First, I do not support the extremist religious elements in Beit Shemesh, as they have been recently discussed in the Israeli and international media.  And yes, I would call those engaging in the behavior as covered by Israeli Channel 2 (and translated by +972's Ami Kaufman) as "extremist.”  They do not represent all of Beit Shemesh's inhabitants, nor of course all who follow Orthodox Judaism, ultra or non-ultra. Second, I wholeheartedly object to the treatment of women in a manner that is any less than equal to that…

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  • Saudi women ask "Where's Hillary?"

    Following Dahlia Scheindlin's post from a few days ago on the campaign by Saudi women for the right to drive, I thought it worth posting this press release calling for support by prominent international Western female figures, notably US Secretary of State and EU High Commissioner Catherine Ashton. FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June 20, 2011 Saudi Women to Hillary Clinton: “Where are you?” Following the launch of the largest women’s rights campaign in Saudi history last week, leading Saudi women ask the US Secretary of State why she has yet to comment. WASHINGTON, DC – Saudi Women for Driving, a coalition…

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  • Drive, Saudi sisters, drive

    Over a decade ago, I wrote a small piece about Druze women in Israel undertaking their own form of social initiative, by learning how to drive.  (It was sometime in 1998; the original internet magazine where it was published it no longer exists.) I remember being fascinated to learn that driving could be a key step towards slow, incremental change in gender roles in a traditional society, leading to social advancement and women's progress. I personally love to drive. I think that beyond the obvious physical independence, there’s something about the feeling of being on the road, free and fast…

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