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A fatwa was issed against me; they condemned me for normalizing obscenity and indecency among women by persuading them to come out of their homes. … I said, ‘You should also give a fatwa against Hazrat Khadija (the first wife of Prophet Muhammad) because she was also a trader.’ “God has not made us as weak as we have made ourselves.”
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“Society as a whole should standup and protect women against harassment,” the president told a national seminar on protection of women against harassment, adding it is our religious duty. “Harassment cannot end only with legislation but with collective effort of society”He also said that we have a similar duty to respect women’s full property rights, which unfortunately is not protected in some parts of the country.
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UN Women hosted a convention on CSR4Women – The Untapped Potential in Islamabad on September 21, 2021. The event was supported by the Government of Norway and chaired by Sima Kamil, the Deputy Governor of the State Bank of Pakistan. The convention brought together business leaders, CEOs of private companies, heads of Chambers of Commerce, development partners and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) experts.
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At the age of two, my leg became disabled due to polio. I didn’t realize how sheltered and protected I was from society’s gossip when my parents were alive. My parents encouraged me to pursue education – not to let polio limit life’s opportunities. Unfortunately, by 2005 both my parents had passed away. Being one of the eldest siblings, I took upon myself to look after my six sisters and two brothers. To make ends meet, I took on numerous odd jobs and used to crawl my way to clean people’s homes or wash clothes. In 2007, I pursued a fashion design course to strengthen the hand embroidery lessons I had received from my Dadi (grandmother).
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[Press release] The European Union and its partners launched a programme that aims to promote the rule of law and enhance the criminal justice system in Pakistan, with a specific focus on the provinces of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Balochistan. Anchored in the vision that an enhanced and reformed justice sector is the only sustainable solution for addressing critical and systematic weaknesses in justice delivery, the programme spans from 2021 till 2025, and is financed with EUR20 million.
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Maria Mahmood has spent the past 13 years improving the Pakistani police force to respond to the needs of women and girls. She is the role model for many women police officers. Photo was taken on 13 March 2021 in Islamabad, Pakistan. "When I started working as a police officer, I thought the process was simple and just. But I was shocked to see the deep-rooted bias of a patriarchal police force. The criminal justice system is discriminatory, and also stigmatizes victims of violence and does not provide efficient support for them."
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Since 2017, as part of the UN Joint Programme on Essential Services for Women and Girls, UN Women and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) have been assisting Mahmood and the Pakistani police force to better address the needs of women and girls who experience violence. The programme, which ended in 2019, was implemented by the Government of Pakistan in partnership with UN Women, the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), UNODC and the World Health organisation (WHO), and was funded by the Governments of Australia and Spain.
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In the past 18 months, by trapping women with their abusers, COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns have worsened the already-widespread violence against women while preventing many of them from getting help. But even those who do manage to contact the police come up against another long-standing challenge: a culture and system that treats the survivor as a big part of the problem.
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We have come a long way, from struggling to manage our own expenses to registering our very own company and employing women workers. It gives me immense joy that many households are prospering because of our work. When someone in need comes to me and I am able to help them, that’s what fulfilment and real joy is. So far I have transformed the lives of 200-250 women. The people who used to criticize me now come and ask how they can improve their income.
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[Press release] At the signing ceremony, Ms. Sharmeela Rassool, said, “Over the years, Pakistan has worked towards creating progressive legal frameworks to safeguard the rights of women and girls. The implementation of the law remains imperative for real change on the ground. Only a gender-sensitive, systematic and coordinated response mechanism from the state, the judiciary, legal community, and other stakeholders will be important to improve women and vulnerable communities’ access to justice.”
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[Press release] Under this MoU, UN Women will support the WPC on the implementation of KP Domestic Violence Against Women Act 2021, Women Empowerment Policy 2017 and lead advocacy on Child Marriage Restraint Bill; enhance service delivery for survivors of gender-based violence through the rollout of capacity building of Dar ul Amans; undertake gender research, draft gender-sensitive laws, develop position papers, resolutions, declarations and reports.
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An initiative in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, north-western Pakistan, is teaching women, and the wider public, about their right to feel safe in public spaces, and what they can do to fight harassment and violence, including on public transport. Information stands have been set up in bus stations, containing leaflets on what constitutes harassment, and what legal resources are available for women if necessary.
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In the early 2000s, suicidal attacks and explosions became a daily occurrence here in Khyber Pukhtunkhwa, north-west Pakistan. Acts of violent extremism affected everyone in my community, be it socially, economically or psychologically. Young people got recruited into violent extremist organizations (VEOs).
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Billions of people across the world stand on the right side of history every day. They speak up, take a stand, mobilize, and take big and small actions to advance women’s rights. This is Generation Equality. "I used to do taekwondo in Hunza when I was young with my instructor and my brother. My family always supported me and encouraged my enthusiasm towards MMA, which is why I have accomplished so much and gained respect and admiration globally."
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[Press release] UN Women Pakistan, in collaboration with the Ministry of Human Rights and the EU in Pakistan, commemorated International Women’s Day at the Presidency today. The event served as an occasion to celebrate progress made towards the protection and promotion of women
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Trans Peshawar, the operating company of the Peshawar’s BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) service, offers the Office of the Ombudsperson against Sexual Harassment at Workplace Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and UN Women in Peshawar to promote awareness messages and sensitize passengers on the issue of harassment at public places and violence against women through BRT buses and terminals as we continue to commemorate the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence campaign in Pakistan and worldwide.
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The National Assembly of Pakistan and President House buildings went orange on Wednesday to show solidarity with the global 16 Days of Activism campaign against Gender-Based Violence (GBV) and officially launch it in Pakistan.
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The Provincial Office of the Ombudsperson for Protection against Harassment of Women at Workplace, in collaboration with UN Women Pakistan, today launched a resource toolkit on ‘Understanding Sexual Harassment, Legal Provisions, Roles of Duty Bearers and Right Holders’ to offer comprehensive guidance to train and capacitate stakeholders on the law and redressal mechanisms for dispensation of justice to victims of sexual harassment at workplace in the Punjab province.
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Women Development Department (WDD) Punjab, the Punjab Commission on the Status of Women (PCSW) and UN Women Pakistan launched a seminal report on ‘Gap Analysis of Legislation related to Ending Violence Against Women (EVAW) in Punjab’ on Tuesday.
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PESHAWAR: Women Parliamentary Caucus Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (WPC-KP) and UN Women Pakistan today launched a report on “Gap Analysis of Legislation related to Ending Violence Against Women (EVAW)” to provide an in-depth analysis of the normative, implementation and monitoring gaps in the legislative framework of the province and to identify and document gaps in the existing provincial legal framework and implementation process.