Archiv für die Kategorie ‘Asien’

FGM: Talking about numbers

Freitag, 05. Februar 2016

This was written by WADI in 2012, when still everyone was taling about 140Million girls, who are mutilated worldwide:

The number 140 million is currently the common official figure of women in the world that have undergone a procedure known as female genital mutilation (FGM). FGM is defined by the World Health Organization as “partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons”. 140 million is a very large and deplorable number, yet today we must seriously begin to consider the possibility that the number of genitally mutilated women in the world is, in fact, much higher. How so? 140 million is the estimation primarily for Africa; but growing evidence suggests that FGM is not only an “African problem” – it may well be widespread in various parts of Asia – including the Middle East. Finding out more about the real measures of the practice beyond Africa should be on the agenda of the international bodies and campaigns against FGM in 2013 and in the years to come.

For years no one was listening, but thanks to the great work done by so many activists in Iraq, Iran, Oman, Malaysia, India, Indonesia and other countries even UNICEF has to admit now that their old numbers were inaccurate, although they just include Indonesia now, while still refusing to  acknowledge the widespread existence of FGM in other South Asian and Middle Eastern countries as well as in India, Pakistan and the Maldives:

The huge global scale of female genital mutilation has been revealed in disturbing new statistics, which show at least 200 million girls and women alive today have undergone ritual cutting, half of them living in just three countries.

The latest worldwide figures, compiled by Unicef, include nearly 70 million more girls and women than estimated in 2014 because of a raft of new data collected in Indonesia, one of the countries where FGM is most prevalent despite the practice being banned since 2006.

FGM becoming more popular in Malaysia

Samstag, 21. Februar 2015

VICE reports how FGM is spreading in Malaysia due to to current Islamization of the the country:

„I’m circumcised because it is required by Islam,“ she says. The Malay word she uses is wajib, meaning any religious duty commanded by Allah. Syahiera is aware of how female circumcision is perceived in the West, but rejects any notion that it’s inhumane. „I don’t think the way we do it here is harmful,“ she says. „It protects young girls from premarital sex as it is supposed to lower their sex drive. But I am not sure it always works.“(…)

Regardless of how cruel FGM is, the majority of Muslim women in Malaysia are, like Syahiera, circumcised. A 2012 study conducted by Dr. Maznah Dahlui, an associate professor at the University of Malaya’s Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, found that 93 percent of Muslim women surveyed had been circumcised. Dahlui also discovered that the procedure is increasingly performed by trained medical professionals in private clinics, instead of by traditional circumcision practitioners called Ma Bidans.(…)

Malaysian medical practitioners also defend the practice by passing judgment onto other countries. „We are very much against what is going on in other countries like Sudan,“ said Dr. Ariza Mohamed, an obstetrician and gynecologist at KPJ Ampang Puteri Specialist Hospital in Kuala Lumpur. „That is very different from what we practice in Malaysia,“ she added. „And there is a big difference between circumcision and female genital mutilation.“

Stop it!

Donnerstag, 22. Mai 2014

Participants of the 2nd Conference against FGM in the Middle East and Asia say: Stop FGM!

Second Middle East & Asia Conference on FGM shows that new strategies are needed

Sonntag, 18. Mai 2014

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On May 7th to 10th the Second Middle East & Asia Conference on Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) was held in Istanbul where more than thirty activists and researchers from Iraq, Egypt, Iran, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Indonesia and India met as well as representatives from UNICEF Iraq, Orchid Project (England) and Terre des Femmes (Germany). It was the second such conference organized by the German-Iraqi NGOs WADI and the Dutch NGO Hivos.

For the longest time FGM was regarded as an African problem, based on the African continent with some prevalence in neighboring countries like Yemen. This mantra was overcome only recently when WADI strated raising conscious, that FGM is also widespread in a Middle Eastern country like Iraq. In January 2012, the first conference on FGM in the Middle East was held in Beirut. In the last two years the STOP FGM Middle East Project by WADI and Hivos collected further evidence, that countries like Oman, Malaysia and Indonesia have a significant high prevalence rate of FGM. Therefore, this second conference widened the scope from the Middle East to South East Asia.

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Solidarity Against Female Genital Mutilation

Donnerstag, 08. Mai 2014

Irfan Al-Allawi writes for Gatestone Institute about the efforts to fight FGM in Islamic Countries with examples from Iraq, Oman and Iran quoting activists who were also present on the Second Middle East Conference on Female Genital Mutilation WADI and Hivos jointly have organized in Istanbul:

Although FGM is associated often with Islam, it is found commonly in non-Muslim areas of Africa and among immigrants to the West from that region. Muslims should take the initiative in opposing FGM; campaigns against this violation of women’s rights are underway already in several Muslim lands.

The best known such effort has taken place in Iraqi Kurdistan. In a recent interview, Thomas von der Osten-Sacken, who is affiliated with WADI, an Iraqi-German organization supporting human rights and civil society in the Middle East, described the beginning of the Kurdistan campaign. Von der Osten-Sacken recounted, „Following the toppling of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein in 2003, mobile teams we organized [went to] various Kurdish villages and towns to offer medical services. One year later, women started approaching the team members about having been cut… It was a taboo to discuss but… we started helping women in 35 villages.“ The Kurdistan anti-FGM movement gained attention in media.

In 2011, the Kurdistan Regional Government in Iraq made FGM a crime, and interviewer Heidi Basch-Harod states that FGM „in Iraqi Kurdistan has significantly decreased, from 90 percent to zero percent in some areas. Nevertheless, the practice has not disappeared.“

(mehr …)

Second Middle East Conference on FGM

Donnerstag, 01. Mai 2014

The Second Middle East & Asia Conference on Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) by WADI and Hivos will take place from May 7th to May 10th in Istanbul.

The conference will tackle two myths about Female Genital Mutilation. It is commonly believed that FGM is mainly practiced in Africa and that it has no religious grounds. Both claims are not true.

FGM is practiced widely in Asia: In Middle Eastern countries such as Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Iraq and Iran, but also in Southeast Asia: in Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, India and the Maledives.

New study from South Iraq

We have invited the most prominent Anti-FGM activists from Oman, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Egypt, Malaysia and Indonesia to present new studies about the prevalence of FGM in their countries and talk about their struggle against the cruel practice which much more than 140 million girls and women have fallen victim to worldwide. Highlights will be three new studies, which have not been presented before: from Southern Iraq, from Iran and from Oman. For South Iraq it is the first study ever on FGM.

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Cleric calls for FGM on Islamic grounds

Freitag, 14. März 2014

Dass FGM mit Islam nicht zu tun habe, hört und liest man ständig. Nur leider stimmen viele muslimische Kleriker dieser Einschätzung so gar nicht zu. Auch nicht dieser Herr von den Malediven:

A fatwa has been issued by an influential Islamic scholar here, citing specific hadith or sayings of the Prophet Mohammed.

FGM is one of the five things that are part of fitrah, or nature, says the fatwa by Dr. Mohamed Iyaz Abdul Latheef, Vice President of the Fiqh Academy of the Maldives, posted on, a website which seeks to ‘convey the true message of Islam.’

The other four things are: ‘shaving the pubes, trimming the moustache, cutting the nails and plucking the armpit hairs,’ writes Latheef, who is also a candidate of the Adhaalath Party, an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, for the upcoming parliamentary elections in the South Asian archipelago.

Latheef quotes a hadith of the collection by Prophet Mohammed’s wife, Aisha, as saying, ‘A bath becomes obligatory if one sleeps with your wife and the circumcised parts touch each other.’

The cleric concludes: ‘The word circumcision has been applied to both men and women here. The hadith demonstrates that women must be circumcised as well.’

Valentine’s Day, Pakistan

Freitag, 14. Februar 2014

At least three students were wounded Friday in a clash at a university in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar, following a dispute over Valentine’s Day celebrations in the deeply Muslim country, police said.

Students from the left-leaning Pakhtun Students Federation were marking the international day of romance with red balloons and cake when they were attacked by students from the rival Islami Jamiat Tulba (IJT) group.

The IJT, the student wing of Pakistan’s hardline Jamaat-e-Islami party, had been celebrating „Haya („Modesty“) Day“ in response to Valentine’s Day which they oppose as un-Islamic. (…)

Valentine’s Day is increasingly popular among younger Pakistanis, many of whom have taken up the custom of giving cards, chocolates and gifts to their sweethearts to celebrate the occasion.


„We’re all rape accomplices“

Samstag, 19. Oktober 2013
Kunwar Khuldune Shahid in Pakistan Today:
Every individual who propagates the deplorable myth that women are inherently dependent on or weaker than men is a rape accomplice. Every person who scorns at a girl for not catering to their definition of decency is a rape accomplice. Anyone who is a flag-bearer of double standards of modesty for men and women is a rape accomplice. Everyone who teaches women to be ashamed of their bodies is a rape accomplice. And if your respect for a woman is dependent on how well covered her body is, then you sir/ma’am, are a rape accomplice as well. (…)
Rape cannot be prevented by forcing women to cover up, it can only be prevented by women empowerment, promotion of gender equality and the eradication of antediluvian myths that teach us how women are men’s property who must keep a watch on them and control them. When it is stated or implied that women are men’s property and that the latter have an upper-hand over the former, you’re cultivating a ground for rapists to grow. And everyone who plays even the most minor of roles in the cultivation should be called a rape accomplice.
Not only are we all rape accomplices because we promote the aforementioned ideals, but our law is quite possibly the grandest of all rape accomplices, since it doesn’t consider DNA as primary evidence in rape cases in the year 2013 AD. Furthermore, by asking for four witnesses – who can only be dubbed the closest of collaborators, since they preferred watching a woman being abused than preventing the act – it’s almost as if we’ve created a social and judicial setup to facilitate rapists.

A father says no

Dienstag, 27. August 2013

Yet FGM still remains a thriving practice. While the more severe Type 3 FGM has been receiving the most focus in terms of elimination efforts, the relatively less hazardous Type 1 and Type 2 continue to be practiced widely in parts of the world, including Malaysia, where Type 1 FGMs are typically conducted on infant Malay females. Resistance towards this practice is thin because, as mentioned earlier, a Type 1 FGM only involves a clitoridectomy,  a partial removal of the clitoris or the clitoral hood. The fact that it is relatively harmless and is grounded in the notion of preserving one’s daughter’s purity means that the practice has not yet met any significant resistance.

While I don’t openly call for resistance against the practice of female circumcision in Malaysia, I do believe that the Malaysian people have the right to know that such practices are losing popular support in other parts of the world and that from a religious point of view, it is wholly unnecessary.

I have made my small contribution towards stemming the prevalence of female circumcision in Malaysia. When the medical attendant asked me if I wanted to circumcise my daughter, my answer was clear: No.


Are they going to legalize FGM in Malaysia?

Dienstag, 11. Dezember 2012

In Malaysia up to 90% of women and girls are victim of Female Genital Mutilation. It seems now the Government ist trying to legalize this practice, because it is seen as a Islamic religious obligation. (Just for the record: Any UN agency would have told you just a couple of years ago that FGM is an African phenomen and not related to religion at all):

According to the results of a university survey the practice is widespread, with more than 90 per cent of Malay Muslim female respondents reporting they have been circumcised.

Azrul Mohamad Khalib told Radio Australia’s Connect Asia: „It certainly is a surprising figure, really. The study involves more than 1,000 female respondents and when we look at it, around 90 per cent or so are Malay Muslims.“ (…)

He said that to have anecdotal evidence „captured“ in the study is really „both surprising and a little bit disappointing“.

What about the suggestion that the health ministry may be about to register the practice?

(mehr …)

Malala Day

Sonntag, 11. November 2012


Many politicians, female social activists and journalists gathered at the provincial assembly on Saturday to express solidarity with a teenage activist for whom the UN had declared November 10 as “Malala Day”.

Malala Yousafzai was shot by the Taliban on October 9 for advocating girls’ right to education in Swat valley and is currently recovering at a UK hospital.

Speaking at the ceremony, provincial assembly speaker Nisar Ahmed Khuhro said Yousafzai played a significant role in the promotion of girls’ education. “Malala’s outlook will help bring about an educational improvement in the country.”

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Zehntausende demonstrieren

Sonntag, 14. Oktober 2012

Zehntausende Menschen sind in Pakistans größter Stadt Karatschi auf die Straßen gegangen, um ihre Solidarität für die 14 Jahre alte Malala Yousufzai auszudrücken. Die junge Aktivistin hatte Bildungsmöglichkeiten von Mädchen gefordert und militante Gruppen kritisiert.

Am Dienstag hatten Taliban-Kämpfer dem Mädchen gezielt in den Kopf geschossen. (Quelle)

Und auch in Quetta kam es zu Protesten

Zum Tode verurteilt

Freitag, 01. Juni 2012

Four women and two men have been sentenced to death in northern Pakistan for singing and dancing at a wedding, police say.

Clerics issued a decree after a mobile phone video emerged of the six enjoying themselves in a remote village in the mountainous district of Kohistan, 176km north of the capital Islamabad.

Pakistani authorities in the area said local clerics had ordered the punishment over allegations that the men and women danced and sang together in Gada village, in defiance of strict tribal customs that separate men and women at weddings.


Umerziehung für Punks

Samstag, 14. April 2012

Eine Gruppe von Musikfans, die in Aceh, der nördlichsten Provinz Indonesiens, ein Benefizkonzert organisierten, fiel im vergangenen Dezember den dort geltenden diskriminierenden Scharia-Verordnungen zum Opfer. Die Jugendlichen, von denen einige sogar aus Jakarta und West-Java angereist waren, wurden am Abend des 10. Dezember 2011 verhaftet. Ihr Verbrechen bestand darin, dass sie ein Punk-Wohltätigkeitskonzert organisiert hatten, mit dem sie im Bürgerzentrum der Provinzhauptstadt Banda Aceh unter dem Slogan „Aceh for the Punk“ Geld für Waisen sammeln wollten.

Reguläre Polizeikräfte und Scharia-Polizisten stürmten den Veranstaltungsort und griffen jeden auf, der eine Irokesen-Frisur oder Tätowierungen, enge Jeans oder Ketten trug. Nachdem sie drei Nächte lang von der örtlichen Polizei festgehalten worden waren – in denen sie keinen Kontakt zu einem Rechtsbeistand oder ihren Familien aufnehmen durften – wurden sie zur „Umerziehung“ in die Polizeischule von Aceh gebracht.



Donnerstag, 29. März 2012

Was ist nun eigentlich pornografisch und was nicht? Indonesische Parlamentarier ringen mit dieser Frage, seit sie 2008 ein weit reichendes „Por-No“-Gesetz verabschiedet haben. Der Bali-Gouverneur brachte es schon vor 2 Jahren auf den Punkt:

If the law was effective, there would be no more television or Internet content that is close to the definition of pornography in the law. But we still can see it.

Effektiv ist es zum Glück nicht. Und dennoch bringt es immer wieder unschuldige Frauen ins Gefängnis – vor allem Tänzerinnen und Sängerinnen.

Nun meint der Minister für religiöse Angelegenheiten, das definitive Kriterium für Pornografie gefunden zu haben – Röcke, die weniger als knielang sind. Das kann man messen, das kann man nachprüfen. Wunderbar!

One in five young Asians think honour violence can be justified

Montag, 19. März 2012

Die Rede ist hier von England … Europa im 21. Jahrhundert also:

Some three per cent even think murder, or so-called “honour killings”, can be justified in some circumstances. And two thirds of young British Asians, including young women, say families should live according to the concept of “honour”, according to the poll for BBC Panorama. The findings come despite attempts by politicians, the police and prosecutors to send out a strong message that honour-based violence is unacceptable.

Nazir Afzal, from the Crown Prosecution Service, said: “I thought this was a generational thing, it was something that would die out with my generation. “Unfortunately, I’ve come across many young people who think the same way.”


Indonesische Kleriker: Homosexualität widerspricht nicht dem Islam

Freitag, 16. März 2012

Homosexuals and homosexuality are natural and created by God, thus permissible within Islam, a discussion concluded here Thursday.

Moderate Muslim scholars said there were no reasons to reject homosexuals under Islam, and that the condemnation of homosexuals and homosexuality by mainstream ulema and many other Muslims was based on narrow-minded interpretations of Islamic teachings.

Siti Musdah Mulia of the Indonesia Conference of Religions and Peace cited the Koran’s al-Hujurat (49:3) that one of the blessings for human beings was that all men and women are equal, regardless of ethnicity, wealth, social positions or even sexual orientation.


Neues vom moderaten Verbündeten IV

Montag, 13. Februar 2012

Liebe ist shirk, Götzenanbetung – Liebe gebührt nur Gott, das ist die Kernidee. Die dann zur Überzeugung führt, am Valentinstag werde der Triumph des Christentums über den Islam gefeiert. Letztes Jahr wurden Dutzende verhaftet, weil sie den Valentinstag gefeiert hatten.


Sonntag, 05. Februar 2012

A group of Muslim scholars and activists just got a step closer to the codification of Muslim Personal Law in India on Saturday. The national consultation on the codification has prepared a revolutionary draft which, among other things, bans triple talaq and restricts polygamy. After codification of the personal law, it will be sent to Parliament for amendments into the law and the Muslim masses will be made aware of what Islam gives and what some Mullahs have denied to them over the centuries.

„Codification of the personal law is the need of the hour. We are not bringing any new law but only reiterating the provisions which the Quran makes for Muslim men and women,“ said reformist scholar Asghar Ali Engineer, whose Centre for Study of Society and Secularism along with Bhartiya Muslim Mahila Andolan and Institute of Islamic Studies organized the meet in Delhi.

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