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#Ismaani – A Hashtag for Women from the Arab States

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

On the occasion of the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence , the United Nations Regional Gender Theme Group in the Arab States region launched #Ismaani, the Arabic language version of #HearMeToo, which was the official global hashtag for the 2018 16 days campaign, spearheaded by the United Nations Secretary-General Mr. Antonio Guterres. The purpose of #Ismaani is to galvanise women and men from the region to shine a spotlight on cases of sexual harassment and abuse and call for... More

The African Union Calls Representatives from Its Member States to Prepare for the 63rd Commission on The Status of Women

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Over 300 representatives from the African Union Member States came together to participate in the Africa ministerial pre-consultative meeting for the 63rd Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW63) held in Cairo, Egypt, on 5 February 2019. Convened under the auspices of the African Union with the support of UN Women, the objective of the Africa ministerial pre-consultative meeting was to draw on the expertise of high-level representatives from governments in the region... More

Acclaimed star Yousra lends her voice to raise awareness about women living with HIV in the Arab States region.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

On the occasion of the 2018 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence in the Arab States region, acclaimed star and UNAIDS Regional Goodwill Ambassador Yousra joined a kick-off ceremony organized by the League of Arab States and the Regional United Nations Gender Theme Group in Cairo, Egypt. At the event, Yousra raised her voice against the stigma and discrimination affecting people and particularly women living with HIV/AIDS in the Arab States region.  Yousra also spoke to... More

Breaking Gender Stereotypes in Saida’s Old City

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Activities with young children on gender socialization. Photo Credit: Mohammad Chaafati Amid the narrow, winding rust-colored stone streets of the old city of Saida, on southern Lebanon’s coast, change is afoot. Here in the core of this major Lebanese city, where Palestinian refugees and Lebanese locals live together as one community, prevailing tightly-controlled gender roles and attitudes are being challenged with the help of Abnaa Saida El Balad, a youth-focused NGO in the city... More

Challenging gender stereotypes through sport in Egypt

Thursday, January 17, 2019

The Cairo SheWolves is one of the first all-women American football teams in Egypt. Photo: Courtesy of the Cairo Wolves. Gender norms and stereotypes prevail throughout Egypt, even in its bustling capital Cairo. It’s here that a novel project, an all-women American football team— is challenging gender norms in sport. Speaking to UN Women about the Cairo SheWolves, Ziad Gaafar Mohammed, coach of the women’s American football team in Cairo’s Dokki and Mohandeseen... More

North Africa Dialogue on Child Marriage and Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Participants of the North Africa Dialogue on Child Marriage and Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting. Photo: UN Women/Emad Karim Currently, more than 200 million girls and women worldwide have experienced Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) and more than 650 million women were married as children. These harmful practices are rooted in unequal gender norms and practices and are grave violations of fundamental human rights. In the MENA region, one in five girls is married before the... More

Engaging girls and boys to achieve gender equality in Northern Morocco

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Training on gender equality conducted by the Association Mhashass Pour le Développement Humain at a high school in Larache province, Morocco. Photo: Courtesy of Association Mhashass. In northern Morocco, certain areas of Larache province experience severe social problems such as poverty, drug use, and widespread and entrenched gender discrimination. The situation in these neighborhoods might be bleak were it not for the efforts of local organizations like Association Mhashass Pour... More

Youth mark ‘International Migrants Day’ in Cairo

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Audience members watched the short film “Deal” as part of the IOM Global Migration Film Festival. Photo: UN Women/Emad Karim In the lead up to the 2018 International Migrants Day, UN Women Regional Office for the Arab States in collaboration with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) Egypt organized the screening of the short film “Deal” as part of IOM’s Global Migration Film Festival in Cairo. Marked each year on 18 December, International... More

Reclaiming gender equality in Islam

Monday, December 17, 2018

Sarah Marsso, Knowledge Building Coordinator at Musawah. Photo: UN Women/Emad Karim A number of restrictive laws in the Arab States region exacerbate challenges to the promotion and protection of women’s fundamental human rights. In response to this situation, Musawah , a women’s organization working to support equality and justice in Muslim families, is pushing back against the ways in which religion is sometimes misused to justify discrimination against women. The group is... More

Dialogue on Gender Justice & the Law in the Arab States Region

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Beirut - Guaranteeing equality before the law, full access to justice, and protection from violence for all women and girls are key to achieving gender equality in the Arab States region. Without such guarantees, no country will be able to realize the grand promise of prosperity, peace and sustainability enshrined in the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development . Based on this premise, the recently completed study on Gender Justice & the Law provides a comprehensive assessment of laws and... More

16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence campaign kicks off with regional event convened by the League of Arab States and the UN

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Group picture at the regional launch of the 16 Days of Activism held at the League of Arab States on 25 November 2018. On 25 November, the League of Arab States (LAS) and the United Nations Regional Gender Theme Group (R-GTG) launched the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence campaign, renewing a shared commitment and strong partnership to support survivors of violence in the Arab States region. From 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against... More

Gender and Displacement: What’s it like to be a Syrian female refugee in Lebanon

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Like their male counterparts, female refugees in Lebanon are struggling to meet even their most basic needs. But their challenges are aggravated by entrenched gender inequalities and norms. A new report by UN Women Unpacking gendered realities in displacement: the status of Syrian refugee women in Lebanon examines how gender-based discrimination constrains Syrian female refugees’ options, access, and opportunities and increase their vulnerability to food insecurity, poverty, violence... More

Gender and displacement: What’s it like to be a female Syrian refugee in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Syrian female refugees in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq face increased discrimination, inequality and risks of violence and exploitation exacerbated by shifting gender roles and responsibilities in displacement. Through interviews with over 500 hundred Syrian female refugees in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, UN Women’s new report Unpacking gendered realities in displacement: the status of Syrian refugee women in Iraq examines how displacement has affected Syrian female refugees in... More

Gender and displacement: What’s it like to be a Syrian female refugee in Jordan?

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Actual and preconceived threats against Syrian female refugees in Jordan are further constraining their movement and increasing their isolation and access to aid. UN Women’s new report Unpacking gendered realities in displacement: the status of Syrian refugee women in Jordan examines how gender-based discrimination interplays with displacement, poverty and instability, increasing refugee Syrian women’s risks to violence and physical isolation in Jordan. The study also seeks to... More

“Finally, I have a chance to regain my dignity… and make decisions for myself.”

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Joud at the Jordanian Women’s Union shelter in Amman, Jordan. Photo: UN Women/Lauren Rooney From a young age, Joud Ahmad*, 21, suffered from mental and physical abuse from her father and brother. When she escaped home, she had nowhere to stay and was later put in administrative detention in the Juwaida Jail in the outskirts of Amman. Her case was then referred to the Jordanian Women’s Union (JWU), which transferred her to one of their shelters. The space is supported by UN... More

Take Five: “In order to end violence against women, we need to work first on changing mindsets”

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Amira Mahmoud, the manager of “The Reception”, a women’s shelter in Alexandria. Photo: UN Women/Mona Soliman Amira Mahmoud is a law school graduate who works as the manager of a women’s shelter in Alexandria, Egypt. Opened in 2010 under the umbrella of the Egyptian Ministry of Social Solidarity, the shelter offers legal aid and psycho-social support and counselling to women survivors of violence in addition to facilitating access to financial assistance and... More

“Men are not the enemy. We need to work with them.”

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Mariam Al-Khodari, Project Coordinator at FE-MALE. Photo: Courtesy of Mariam Al-Khodari. Mariam Al-Khodari is a feminist activist from Lebanon. She’s a project coordinator at FE-MALE, a non-governmental organization working to realize women’s rights and achieve gender equality. Working with UN Women’s Men and Women for Gender Equality program me, the organization has become a hub for gender equality activism and consciousness-raising in Lebanon. Mariam had been... More

Take five: “Ending violence against women and girls in Syria will require building peace, ensuring safety, and changing laws to guarantee adequate protections for vulnerable groups in society.”

Saturday, November 17, 2018

< Soulaima Jabi, women’s rights activist and Chairwoman of the Bedayat Foundation in Syria. Photo: Courtesy of Soulaima Jabi. Soulaima Jabi is the Chairwoman of the Board of the Bedayat Foundation, an NGO working to support displaced and low-income families in Syria. With a background in negotiation and conflict resolution, she has worked with a number of NGOs over the last 20 years. Recently, she has engaged in UN Women-supported advocacy initiatives to ensure Syrian women&rsquo... More

UN Women highlights gender dimension in the first ever Africa-Arab Platform on Disaster Risk Reduction

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Africa-Arab Platform on Disaster Risk Reduction in Tunis. Photo: Association of Environmental and Sustainable Development of ILLIZI. The first ever Africa-Arab Platform on Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) was convened between 9-13 October 2018 in Tunis, Tunisia, organized by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR), the League of Arab States and the African Union Commission, and hosted by the Government of Tunisia. The dialogue brought together about 900 participants... More

Unleashing the Potential of African Youth to Achieve the 2030 Agenda

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Participants of the African Youth Conference 2018. The Africa Youth Conference, under the theme “ Unleashing the Potential of Youth in Africa – Prioritizing Investment in Youth Development in the post 2015 Agenda”, took place in Nairobi, Kenya between October 23-25. Organized and sponsored by UN Women, UNDP, UN Environment, UNESCO, UNFPA, UNICEF, and other partners, the conference offered a regional platform to 300+ young people and key stakeholders to share ideas and... More

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