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Sri Lanka: Women look to the future with optimism

Like many others in her village in northern Sri Lanka, Jecindan Dharsha was displaced several times during nearly three decades of conflict in the country and faced severe hardships. When she came back to her village she didn’t have a penny to her name. “I had to start my life all over again,” Dhars More

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Uganda: Women's collectives fight for land rights, against corruption

In 2003, Joyce Nangobi was about to lose her home. In Jinja, Uganda, the land that she lived on was going to be put up for sale to low-wage manufacturing companies, leaving Joyce and the other residents out in the cold.  The women in her town had neither the resources to purchase the land, nor More

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In Albania, new horizons open for domestic violence survivors

Rina spent the last three months of her last pregnancy at a shelter for survivors of domestic violence in Tirana. She and two of her younger children, aged 2 and 5, had fled their abusive home in Burrel, in the mountains of northern Albania. Rina's eyes fill with tears when she speaks of the eldest More

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In Niger, groups of women fight against sand encroachment

Squatting among around 15 women wrapped in beautiful colourful fabrics, Bintou Bira, well over 60, picks up handfuls of sand and puts it into plastic bags. Over the  last several months, her group of 73 female nursery workers, in collaboration with the authorities of Mainé Soroa in southeastern More

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Women gain ground in El Salvador’s politics

Ana Luisa Rodríguez de González has already served four terms as the mayor of Atiquizaya. She won her first election in 2003. In that same year, of the 262 municipal councils holding elections, only 15 were led by women. "These first elections I contested were a two-fold challenge for me" More

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China: Mosuo women artisans reach world market

Luru-Dashima, a female artisan from the Mosuo community in southwest China, never imagined  her painstakingly hand-woven scarves would sit atop shiny shelves in Tangs, an upscale Singaporean department store. But for its latest Christmas sale, Tangs chose products not from Europe’s famous fashi More

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Timor-Leste breaks down barriers to justice for victims of domestic violence

An estimated 30 to 50 percent of Timorese women suffer abuse from their partners at some point in their relationship. This is in spite of the country’s 2010 Law Against Domestic Violence, which defines it as a public crime that requires the state to respond whether a victim files a criminal complain More

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In Gaza, first female mukhtarah mediates legal disputes

Um Mohammed broke the conservative tribal traditions of her community when she became one of Gaza strip’s first “Mukhtarah” – the female equivalent of Mukhtar, one who peacefully settles disputes without need to resort to formal judicial systems. “I once found myself having to intervene to resolve a More

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Afghan police force recruits women to fight crime and stigma

Kabul, Afghanistan — It was four years ago that Captain Zohra Daulatzia joined the Afghan National Police. But the mother of two girls still gets excited about that momentous day in her life when she achieved one of her life’s greatest ambitions. “I was excited to wear the uniform and felt like I wa More

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In Afghanistan, mullahs use Islam to protect women and their rights

The Government of Afghanistan is tapping mullahs and religious elders to make people aware of the rights women are entitled to in accordance with Islamic laws. The national programme is being implemented by the Ministry of Haj and Religious Affairs and the Ministry of Women Affairs, with support fr More