Zoran Petrovski on Wed, 8 Sep 1999 21:35:11 +0200


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Syndicate: Re: a moment of your time, please


Zoran Petrovski wrote:

> Hannah Kops wrote:
>
> > Please spare a minute to read this mail. Thank you.
> > > >
> > > >One woman was beaten to DEATH by an angry mob of fundamentalists for
> > > >accidentally exposing her arm while she was driving. The government of
> > > >Afghanistan is waging a war upon women.
> > > >
> > > >The situation is getting so bad that one person in an editorial of the
> > > >Times compared the treatment of women there to the treatment of Jews
> > >in
> > > >pre-Holocaust Poland.
> > > >
> > > >Since the Taliban took power in 1996, women have had to wear burqua
> > >and
> > > >have been beaten and stoned in public for not having the proper
> > >attire,
> > > >even if this means simply not having the mesh covering in front of
> > > >their eyes.   Another was stoned to death for trying to leave the
> > > >country with a man   that  was not a relative.
> > > >
> > > >Women are not allowed to work or even go out   in public without a
> > >male
> > > >relative; professional women such as professors   translators,
> > >doctors,
> > > >lawyers, artists and writers have been forced from   their jobs and
> > > >stuffed into their homes, so that depression is becoming   so
> > >widespread
> > > >that it has reached emergency levels.
> > > >
> > > >There is no way in such an extreme Islamic society to know the suicide
> > > >rate with certainty, but relief workers are estimating that the
> > >suicide
> > > >rate among women, who cannot find proper medication and treatment for
> > > >severe depression and would rather take their lives than live in such
> > > >conditions, has increased significantly.   Homes where a woman is
> > > >present must have their windows painted so that   she can never be
> > >seen
> > > >by outsiders. They must wear silent shoes so that   they are never
> > > >heard.   Women live in fear of their lives for the slightest
> > > >misbehavior. Because   they cannot work, those without male relatives
> > >or
> > > >husbands are either   starving to death or begging on the street, even
> > > >if they hold Ph.D.'s.
> > > >
> > > >There are almost no medical facilities available for women, and relief
> > > >workers, in protest, have mostly left the country, taking medicine and
> > > >psychologists and other things necessary to treat the sky-rocketing
> > > >level of depression among women.
> > > >
> > > >At one of the rare hospitals for women, a reporter found still, nearly
> > > >lifeless bodies lying motionless on top of beds, wrapped in their
> > > >burqua, unwilling to speak, eat, or do anything, but slowly wasting
> > >away
> > > >Others have gone mad and were seen crouched in corners, perpetually
> > > >rocking or crying, most of them in fear.
> > > >
> > > >One doctor is considering, when what little medication that is left
> > > >finally runs out, leaving these women in front of the president's
> > > >residence as a form of peaceful protest. It is at the point where the
> > > >term 'human rights violations' has become an understatement. Husbands
> > > >have the power of life and death over their women relatives,
> > >especially
> > > >their wives, but an angry mob has just as much right to stone or beat
> > >a
> > > >woman, often to death, for exposing an inch of flesh or offending them
> > > >in the slightest way.
> > > >
> > > >David Cornwell has said that those in the West should not judge the
> > > >Afghan people for such treatment because it is a 'cultural thing', but
> > > >this is not even true. Women enjoyed relative freedom, to work, dress
> > > >generally as they wanted, and drive and appear in public alone until
> > > >only 1996 - the rapidity of this transition is the main reason for the
> > > >depression and suicide; women who were once educators or doctors or
> > > >simply used to basic human freedoms are now severely restricted and
> > > >treated as sub-human in the same of right-wing fundamentalist Islam.
> > >It
> > > >is not their tradition or 'culture', but is alien to them, and it is
> > > >extreme even for those cultures where fundamentalism is the rule.
> > > >Besides, if we could excuse everything on cultural grounds, then we
> > > >should not be appalled that the Carthaginians sacrificed their infant
> > > >children, that little girls are circumcised in parts of Africa, that
> > > >blacks in the US deep south in the 1930's were lynched, prohibited
> > >from
> > > >voting, and forced to submit to unjust Jim Crow laws.
> > > >
> > > >Everyone has a right to a tolerable human existence, even if they are
> > > >women in a Muslim country in a part of the world that Westerners may
> > >not
> > > >understand. If Iife can threaten military force in Kosovo in the
> > >name
> > > >of human rights for the sake of ethnic Albanians, then NATO and   the
> > > >West can certainly express peaceful outrage at the oppression,
> > >murder
> > > >and injustice committed against women by the Taliban.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >STATEMENT:
> > > >In signing this, we agree that the current treatment of women   in
> > > >Afghanistan is completely UNACCEPTABLE and deserves support and
> > >action
> > > >by the people of the United Nations and that the current   situation
> > >in
> > > >Afghanistan will not be tolerated.   Women's Rights is not a small
> > >issue
> > > >anywhere and it is UNACCEPTABLE for   women in 1999 to be treated as
> > > >sub-human and so much as property.   Equality and human decency is a
> > > >RIGHT not a freedom, whether one lives   in Afghanistan or anywhere
> > > >else.
> > > >1) Marianne Giroud, Zurich, Switzerland
> > > >2) Vera Koehli, Zurich, Switzerland
> > > >3) Hartmut Stiess, Zurich, Switzerland
> > > >4) Michael Sturm, Zurich, Switzerland
> > > >5) Adrian Jakob, Berne, Switzerland
> > > >6) Christian Jakob, Zurich, Switzerland
> > > >7) Barbara Rieker, Zurich, Switzerland
> > > >8) Chiara Lo Presti, Zurich, Switzerland
> > > >9) Kathrin Koch, Zurich, Switzerland
> > > >10) Fred R. Willitzkat, Kiel, Germany
> > > >11) Susanne Heckoetter, Giessen, Germany
> > > >12) Beate Schugk, Turku, Finland
> > > >13) Mike Cofferon, Dublin, Ireland
> > > >14) Paul Crossan, Dublin, Ireland
> > > >15) Martin Vahey Dublin,Ireland
> > > >16)Wendy Vahey,Dublin Ireland
> > > >17) Steven O'Conor, Dublin, Ireland
> > > >18) Deirdre O'Kane, Mullingar, Ireland
> > > >19) Sara O'Kane, Dublin, Ireland
> > > >20) Eileen O'Connor, Dublin, Ireland
> > > >21) Amy O'Kane, Mullingar, Ireland
> > > >22) Oscar O'Connor, Mullingar, Ireland
> > > >23) Hugo O'Connor, Mullingar, Ireland
> > > >24) Pauline Mossop, Dublin, Ireland
> > > >25) Kay Tyrrell, Dublin, Ireland
> > > >26) Peggy Tyrrell, Dublin, Ireland
> > > >27)Mary Rose Tobin, Dublin Ireland
> > > >28) Ita Flynn, London UK
> > > >29) Laura Empson, Henley-on-Thames, UK
> > > >30) Gillian Hughes, London UK
> > > >31) Anne-Marie Logan, London UK
> > > >32) Alex Lennane, London, UK
> > > >33) Angela Snuggs, London UK
> > > >34) Jo Pratt, London, UK
> > > >35) Lori Worley, London, UK
> > > >36) C Burton, London, UK
> > > >37) Clare Haynes, London, UK
> > > >38) Lucy Short, London, UK
> > > >39) Andrew Downs, London, England
> > > >40) Steve Peake, London, England
> > > >41) Sharon Feder, Vancouver, Canada
> > > >42) Caroline Rowe, Cornwall, England
> > > >43) Joanne Harrington, Bath, England
> > > >44) Kerry Wadsworth, London, England
> > > >45) Carol Hatchett, London, England
> > > >46> Nick West, England
> >      47   Emma Banks, London, England
> > 48)     David Levy, London, England
> > 49) Peter Elliott. London, England
> > 50.) Carlos Fleischmann, Bremen, Germany
> > 51)Nina Corda, Bremen, Germany
> > 52.) Stefan Ernsting, Berlin, Germany
> > 53.) Bert Dahlmann, Bremen, Germany
> > 54.) Zoran Petrovski, Skopje, Macedonia
>
> > > >Please sign to support, and include your town and country. Then copy
> > > >and e-mail to as many people as possible.
> > > >
> > > >If you receive this list with   more than 50 names on it, please
> > >e-mail
> > > >a copy of it to:   Mary Robinson, High Commissioner, UNHCHR,
> > > >webadmin.hchr@unorg.ch
> > > >and to:
> > > >Angela King, Special Advisor on Gender Issues and the Advancement of
> > > >Women, UN, daw@undp.org
> > > >Even if you decide not to sign, please be considerate and do not kill
> > > >the petition.
> > > >




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