‘One Law for All’ : here is their latest newsletter

It is interesting that the open letter to Mr. Hamilton should have hit my mailbox so close to the time I got the newsletter for One Law for All, as they both discuss the burqa/nikab and the social attitudes this promotes. 

Personally, I regard both the burqa/nikab and the hijab (and all its variations) as a symbol of supremacism, in much the way the KKK hood is. 

Why? 

Under Sharia, slave women are not permitted to wear them:  it is thus, in no uncertain terms, worn to demonstrate that the wearer is a member of a higher social class than the woman who does not wear one.  And, since it is literally showing off that you are not a slave but others are/ought to be treated as one, the KKK hood comparison is painfully accurate.

As for gender segregation (which the newsletter addresses):  regular readers of my blog may be aware that I regard it as an incarnation of evil and advocate against it in every way, shape and form (including 100% of all sports).

But let me stop rambling and bring you One Law for All’s latest newsletter:

Unveiled: A Publication of Fitnah – Movement for Women’s Liberation
December 2013, Volume 1, Issue 3. Editor: Maryam Namazie. Design: Kiran Opal.

The publication is available here: fitnah.org/fitnah_publication_english/publication_english.html

PDF Version available for download here: fitnah.org/fitnah_publication_english/unveiled_3.pdf

URGENT ACTION: REJECT SEX SEGREGATION
IT’S 2013. LET’S NOT TIME TRAVEL
Universities UK (UUK) guidance to universities on external speakers endorses gender apartheid by saying that segregation of the sexes at universities is not discriminatory as long as “both men and women are being treated equally, as they are both being segregated in the same way!” Any form of segregation, whether by race, sex or otherwise is discriminatory. Separate is never equal and segregation is never applied to those who are considered equal. Join us on International Human Rights Day to unequivocally reject gender apartheid. It’s 2013. Let’s not time travel.
DATE: Tuesday 10 December 2013; TIME: 5:00-6:30pm; AT: Universities UK, Woburn House, 20 Tavistock Square, London WC1H 9HQ.

WE SHOULD NOT ABANDON SECULARISM
Maryam Namazie’s Interview with Pragna Patel and Gita Sahgal
Pragna Patel responds: “…If we don’t defend secular values and instead embrace religious ones then we will be guilty of developing counter resistance strategies against racism and imperialism that hides other forms of oppression. Religion cannot be embraced as a framework for articulating disaffection and alienation or to address questions of equality and rights since its very foundation is based on recognising some rights but not others. We see this most clearly played out in the clash between the right to manifest religion and the right to be free from religion. Women who want to be free from religious impositions that deny them their autonomy and sexual freedom are constantly excluded. But we need to alert to the ways in which this exclusion is actually articulated. Often demands for the right to manifest religion may seem on the surface to be progressive but in fact hide a highly reactionary agenda. A good example of this is the recent capitulation by Universities UK (UUK), a representative body of universities in the UK, to demands for gender segregation in universities… It would appear that UUK is ignorant of the history and struggles against racial discrimination based on the flawed logic of ‘separate but equal.’ Such logic legitimised racial apartheid in South Africa and now legitimises gender apartheid. There is a disturbing failure to recognise that this stance will allow the right to manifest religion (a qualified right) to trump the right to be free from gender discrimination and subjugation (an absolute right).”

NEWS FLASH: NOVEMBER 2013
“Afghanistan: Twelve years after the fall of the Taliban, Afghanistan’s government is considering bringing back stoning as a punishment for sex outside marriage. The sentence for married adulterers, along with flogging for unmarried offenders, appears in a draft revision of the country’s penal code being drawn up by the ministry of justice. It is the latest in a string of encroachments on hard-won rights for women, after parliament quietly cut the number of seats set aside for women on provincial councils, and drew up a criminal code whose provisions will make it almost impossible to convict anyone for domestic violence.
“Iran: A document adopted by the Supreme Revolutionary Cultural Council with president Rouhani’s signature has been forwarded to the education and health ministries to “reduce the unnecessary mixing of males and females.” The section on gender segregation included the expansion of the culture of chastity and the veil…”

ARTS CORNER: BURKA AVENGER
“The Burka Avenger is a mild mannered unveiled teacher who becomes the burka avenger when her school is threatened with being shut down by Islamists, armed with pens and books…”

EDITORIAL: SECULARISM AS A UNIVERSAL RIGHT
Maryam Namazie
“…There are strong secular movements in so-called Muslim-majority countries like Iran, Pakistan, Algeria and Mali, despite the great risks involved. Karima Bennoune has brought to light many such groups and individuals in her recently published book, the title of which is based on a Pakistani play where the devotional singer who is beaten and intimidated for singing deemed ‘un-Islamic’ retorts: ‘Your fatwas do not apply here.’ The uprisings and revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa, such as the mass protests against Islamists for the assassination of Socialist leader Chokri Belaid in Tunisia; the vast secular protests in Turkey against Islamisation; the Harlem Shake in front of Muslim Brotherhood headquarter in Egypt and the largest demonstration in contemporary history against the Muslim Brotherhood – 33 million people – are all evidence of that. Post-secularism (leaving people at the mercy of ‘their own culture’) and the systematic and theorised failure to defend secularism and people’s, particularly women’s, civil rights in many countries and communities, only aids and abets the religious-Right to the detriment of us all – believers and non. As British philosopher AC Grayling has said: secularism is a fundamental right. Today, given the influence of the religious-Right, it is also a precondition for women’s rights and equality and for rights and freedoms in the society at large. It must be actively defended, promoted, and articulated”…

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: UNDECIDED ABOUT LEGISLATING DRESS
Marieme Helie Lucas Responds for Fitnah
“…Women wearing the burqa in Europe today are instrumentalised by the Muslim extreme-right, whether or not they realise it. They display their ‘difference’ and ‘identity,’ which is exactly what the traditional far-right needs in order to fulfil its xenophobic agenda. Both the traditional xenophobic extreme-right and the Muslim extreme-right want a violent confrontation and need it in order to recruit fresh troops. This is not a reason for shying away from addressing the proliferation of burqas everywhere, but it should be an incentive to not isolate the ‘flag’ from the broader issue of the growing far-rights in Europe, including the Muslim far-right…”

Also See Maryam Namazie’s interview with Channel 4Thought.tv on banning the niqab:
www.4thought.tv/themes/should-britain-ban-the-veil/1484?autoplay=true

Fitnah Unveiled number 2 on the burqa and veil: fitnah.org/fitnah_publication_english/unveiled_2.pdf

Fitnah Unveiled number 1 on the rise of fitnah: fitnah.org/fitnah_publication_english/unveiled1.pdf

Contact Unveiled Editor:
Maryam Namazie: +44 (0) 7719166731
BM Box 1919, London WC1N 3XX, UK
Email: fitnah.movement@gmail.com
Blog: fitnahmovement.blogspot.co.uk
Web: www.fitnah.org

25 APRIL: INTERNATIONAL DAY TO DEFEND BANGLADESHI BLOGGERS

From Maryam Namazi of One Law For All:

‘The Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain and others have called for 25 April to be an international day to defend Bangladesh’s bloggers and activists. Please spread the word, sign this petition today, and stand with and for Bangladeshi freethinkers.

As you may know, in January, 29 year old blogger Asif Mohiuddin was stabbed. In February, 35 year old atheist blogger involved in the Shahbag protests, Ahmed Rajib, was brutally killed. Islamists continue to threaten prominent bloggers and have called for the “execution of 84 atheist bloggers for insulting religion”. Rather than prosecute the Islamists, the government has arrested some bloggers and shut down blogs and sites.

We unequivocally condemn the attacks on and threats against atheist, secularist and freethinking bloggers and call on the Bangladeshi government to guarantee their safety, respect free expression and prosecute Islamists who threaten, attack and harm critics.

On 25 April, we urge groups and individuals to rally at Bangladeshi embassies, contact members of parliament in their countries of residence, highlight the situation, write protest letters, carry out acts of solidarity, Tweet #Bangladesh #Bloggers and more.

You can find more information here.’

In case you are not aware, Bangladeshi Islamists have been calling for including the death penalty for transgressing Bangladesh’s blasphemy laws:

Blasphemy laws are being implemented in more and more countries.  Russia, for example, is preparing a blasphemy law so unreasonable (in every sense of the word) that the mere teaching of evolution and the Big Bang Theory would violate it.  And don’t even get me started on the UN…

We must fight this trend of normalizing penalties for blasphemy – an integral part of free speech.  Supporting the Bangladeshi bloggers is a small step in the right direction!

An urgent message from ‘One Law for All’ about child marriage in the UK

This is the email I received from One Law for All, whose urgent message needs to be seen by as many people as possible (please, spread the word!):

Dear Friend,

We are writing to you today to ask for your urgent and immediate support.

As you may have seen in the papers recently, there is growing evidence that young children – some as young at 5 years old – are being “married” to older men in Sharia courts across Britain. This is increasingly being sanctioned by the Islamists who run Britain’s network of Sharia courts, and there is evidence that this practice is growing.

Recent Investigations

recent undercover investigation by the Sunday Times found imams in Britain willing to “marry” young girls, provided this was carried out in secret. The imams had been approached by an undercover reporter posing as a father who said he wanted his 12 year old daughter married, to prevent her from being tempted in to a “western lifestyle”.

Imam Mohammed Kassamali, of the Husaini Islamic Centre in Peterborough, sanctioned the marriage, but stressed the need for total secrecy. He stated: “I would love the girl to go to her husband’s houses (sic) as soon as possible, the younger the better. Under sharia (Islamic law) there is no problem. It is said she should see her first sign of puberty at the house of her husband. The problem is that we cannot explain such things (the marriage) if the girl went tomorrow (to the authorities).”

Abdul Haque, who officiates at weddings at the Shoreditch mosque, east London agreed to carry out the formalities of the wedding. However, he told the reporter that he should “tell people it is an engagement but it will be a marriage”. He added: “In Islam, once the girl reaches puberty the father has the right, the parents have the right, but under the laws of this country if the girl complains and says her marriage has been arranged and she wasn’t of marriageable age, then the person who performed the marriage will be jailed as well as the mother and father”.

Earlier this year, it was also reported that at least 30 girls, some as young as 9, were “married” in sharia courts in one London borough alone.

Clearly, child “marriages” are an abomination; they are nothing short of religiously-sanctioned child rape and paedophilia.

Sharia proponents deceptively say that forced marriages are unacceptable under Sharia and that both bride and groom must choose to marry as if that is the issue at hand. Islamists have gotten away with years of misogyny against Muslim women under cover of “choice” and are now using similar language with regards children. Nonetheless, child welfare must take precedence irrespective of religious beliefs. This is something we must urgently remind the Government of. Sharia courts are a scandal and must be stopped.

Arbitration and Mediation (Equality) Bill

One important way to tackle this matter is to galvanise support for the Arbitration and Mediation (Equality) Bill introduced to the House of Lords last year by crossbench peer, Baroness Caroline Cox. The Bill is due for a second reading in October.

The Government has so far declined to support Cox’s Bill. They do not believe there is a parallel legal system in operation. They also insist that everyone has full right of access to the British courts. This is simply not the case. There are many with little or no English language skills, trapped by community pressure, who believe Sharia courts operate as real courts and who regard their decisions as legally binding. The idea that they can easily instruct a high street solicitor to help them access their full rights under UK law is far from reality.

The Government must be pressured into taking immediate action, including by supporting Cox’s Bill, and shutting down Sharia and religious courts. If child welfare takes precedence then the Government is duty-bound to take action.

Sign our new petition in support of Baroness Cox’s Bill; tell the Government that enough is enough! Please sign it now.

Help Us

Baroness Cox has said in the past that her Bill was inspired by One Law for All. To donate to our important work, please either send a cheque made payable to One Law for All to BM Box 2387, London WC1N 3XX, UK or pay via Paypal. We need regular support and also for supporters to commit to giving at least £5-10 a month via direct debit. You can find out more about how to join the 100 Club here.

If you shop online, please do so via the Easy Fundraising’s website. It won’t cost you anything extra but can help raise much needed funds for One Law for All.

We look forward to your immediate intervention in this matter.

Best wishes,

Maryam Namazie and Anne Marie Waters
Spokespersons
One Law for All
BM Box 2387
London WC1N 3XX, UK
Tel:  +44 (0) 7719166731
onelawforall@gmail.com
www.onelawforall.org.uk

One Law For All: ‘Sharia law: neither equal not free’

From an email from Miriam Namazie:

Update on Baroness Cox’s Equality Bill
One Law for All has been spending a lot of time recently working with Caroline Cox and her team in promoting the Arbitration and Mediation Services (Equalities) Bill. The aim of the Bill, which was introduced to the House of Lords last year, is to make arbitration services in the UK subject to equality laws and to bar any arbitration where parties are of unequal standing; for example, it would disallow arbitration providers placing greater weight on the testimony of one party over another, as is the case with sharia law where a wife’s word is worth only half of her husband’s. The Bill will also create a criminal offence and make it illegal for arbitration bodies to pretend they have greater jurisdiction than they do – in other words, preventing them from misinforming people that they must obey their rulings. It will also place a duty on public bodies in the UK to inform women of their rights under British la w.
The Bill is due for a second reading in the House of Lords this October. Many Peers have already pledged support but we need your help in persuading them further. If you have time, please write to any members of the House of Lords and ask them to consider the seriousness of this Bill and its need in maintaining a society where all people are equal before a single secular and democratic law. In your letter, you could point out to Peers that the Islamic Sharia Council and the Muslim Arbitration Tribunal both openly acknowledge that the testimony of women is given less value than that of men, that custody of children is awarded to fathers regardless of the circumstances, and that sharia family law permits, and therefore encourages, domestic violence and the abuse of women and children.  You can find out how to write to Peers here: http://www.parliament.uk/get-involved/contact-a-lord/lord/. You can read the bill here:  http://services.parliament.uk/bills/2012-13/arbitrationandmediationservicesequality.html.
‘Equal and Free?’, a book of evidence compiled in support of the Bill, can be found here: http://equalandfree.org/download-file/downloads/EqualandFree.pdf. It includes testimony from women who have been through the sharia family law system here in Britain, as well as charities and groups which work closely with these women. It also looks at other religious tribunals, such as the Beth Din, and the effect the Bill may have on arbitration more broadly.
Debates and Conferences
One of the issues of concern to those deciding whether to support the Bill is that it may represent an infringement on religious liberty. One Law for All maintains that the right to freedom of religion ends at the point where other people’s rights begin. Sharia family and criminal law represent a serious infringement upon the rights of women to receive a fair hearing and to live without violence or the threat of violence. We will be holding a debate on this issue in the coming months and will invite members of both Houses of Parliament to attend – further details will follow. For more information on other speaking engagements and events, visit: http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/category/events/.
Child Protection
As has been mentioned, sharia family law awards custody of children to fathers from a pre-set age regardless of the circumstances, and regardless of whether the father is abusive or violent. Again, the Muslim Arbitration Tribunal and the Islamic Sharia Council do not deny this fact.  It is also known that matters of child custody and contact are being increasingly heard by sharia bodies, increasing the isolation of Muslims in Britain and endangering the children of Muslim parents who may be excluded from the protections provided by British law – which places the wellbeing of the child as the paramount consideration in all questions of this kind. We have been pushing this message very strongly at the House of Lords; all Peers have now received a copy of ‘Equal and Free?’ which contains details of how sharia family law is flouting legal norms in matters of child protection, and the danger this represents &ndas h; it is creating a parallel legal system, based on religion, in the UK.
Support us!
December will mark four years since the establishment of the One Law for All campaign. A lot has changed in the public debate on Sharia law and equality as a result of our campaign. If you want to and can, please help us to continue our essential work. To donate to the work of One Law for All, you can either send a cheque made payable to One Law for All to BM Box 2387, London WC1N 3XX, UK or pay via Paypal.  We also need regular support and for supporters to commit to giving at least £5-10 a month via direct debit. You can find out more about how to donate or join the 100 Club here: http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/donate/.
Also, if you shop online, please do so via the Easy Fundraising’s website: http://www.easyfundraising.org.uk/register-supporter/?char=40474. It won’t cost you anything extra but can help raise much needed funds for One Law for All.
Finally, if you haven’t already signed up to the One Law for All campaign, please join the nearly 29,000 people and groups that have: http://onelawforallpetition.com/onelaw/onela300.php?nr=40155035.
Thanks again
Warmest wishes
Anne Marie Waters
One Law for All Spokesperson
NOTES
1. The One Law for All Campaign was launched on 10 December 2008, International Human Rights Day, to call on the UK Government to recognise that Sharia and religious courts are arbitrary and discriminatory against women and children in particular and that citizenship and human rights are non-negotiable.
2. For further information contact:
Maryam Namazie
Anne Marie Waters
Spokespersons
One Law for All
BM Box 2387
London WC1N 3XX, UK

One Law for All: report from the February 11th protest in London

(My apologies – embedding decided not to work in this post, though I have no idea why, it’s not like I haven’t done it in several other posts just today…)
Following is an email I received from Maryam Namazie of One Law For All, reporting on the event and supplying some excellent links.  Congratulations on a successful event – and thank you to each and every person who participated and/or helped spread the word:  this is one fight we must not back down from!!!
One Law for All held a successful rally in defence of free expression on Saturday 11 February 2012 opposite the Houses of Parliament. Hundreds braved the cold weather to join the rally at Old Palace Yard.
The rally followed several incidents in London recently where freedom of expression was curtailed in favour of fear of causing offence. In one incident, a talk on sharia law by One Law for All’s Anne Marie Waters was cancelled following threats of violence. Rhys Morgan was told by his school to remove a picture of Jesus and Mo from his Facebook page – a picture he had used in solidarity with the University College London Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society who had been asked by their student union to remove the same image. Both UCL and the London School of Economics have since passed draconian motions which will further restrict religious criticism or satire at their schools.
Speakers at the rally included A C Grayling, Nick Cohen, Caroline Cox, Gita Sahgal, Keith Porteous Wood, and Rhys Morgan.
The event was sponsored by the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science UK and featured Richard Dawkins who told the crowd to ‘stop being so damn respectful’ and that without freedom of speech, society would be a ‘scientific, technological, moral dark age’.
Maryam Namazie of One Law for All closed the rally by remembering those, around the world, who are fighting for freedom of expression, often at cost of their lives.
Actions to mark the occassion were also held in other cities, including Germany, Portugal and South Africa. Some highlights included a solidarity rally in Warsaw, Poland: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqRBW7zGflk&fb_source=message, a fundraising dinner for One Law for All in Melbourne, Australia and the start of a campaign by Women’s Initiative for Citizenship and Universal Rights in France to denounce discrimination faced by women due to the application of unfair laws in France.
The Free Expression Day of Action was endorsed by hundreds of people and organisations: http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/endorsements-for-11-february-day-of-action-for-free-expression/.
As a follow up to the day, One Law for All has initiated a campaign in defence of 23 year old writer, Hamza Kashgari, who faces execution in Saudi Arabia for tweeting about Mohammad, Islam’s prophet. To support the campaign, click here: http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/freedom-for-saudi-writer-hamza-kashgari/.
NOTES:
2. To donate to the work of One Law for All, please either send a cheque made payable to One Law for All to BM Box 2387, London WC1N 3XX, UK or pay via Paypal: http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/donate/. We need regular support and also for supporters to commit to giving at least £5-10 a month via direct debit. You can find out more about how to join the 100Club here: http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/donate/.
3. If you shop online, please do so via the Easy Fundraising website: http://www.easyfundraising.org.uk/register-supporter/?char=40474. It won’t cost you anything extra but can help raise much needed funds for One Law for All.
4. For more information, contact:
Maryam Namazie
Anne Marie Waters
Spokespersons
One Law for All
BM Box 2387
London WC1N 3XX, UK

One Law For All: ‘Hold this date – 11 February 2012: A Day to Defend Free Expression’

One Law for All is calling for a rally in defence of free expression and the right to criticise religion on 11 February 2012 in central London from 2-4pm.

We are also calling for simultaneous events and acts in defence of free expression on 11 February in countries world-wide.

The call follows an increased number of attacks on free expression in the UK, including a 17 year old being forced to remove a Jesus and Mo cartoon or face expulsion from his Sixth Form College and demands by the UCL Union that the Atheist society remove a Jesus and Mo cartoon from its Facebook page. It also follows threats of violence, police being called, and the cancellation of a meeting at Queen Mary College where One Law for All spokesperson Anne Marie Waters was to deliver a speech on Sharia. Saying ‘Who gave these kuffar the right to speak?’, an Islamist website called for the disruption of the meeting. Two days later at the same college, though, the Islamic Society held a meeting on traditional Islam with a speaker who has called for the death of apostates, those who mock Islam, and secularist Muslims.

Whilst none of this is new, recent events reveal an increased confidence of Islamists to censor free expression publicly, particularly given the support received from universities and other bodies in the name of false tolerance, cultural sensitivity and respect.

The right to criticise religion, however, is a fundamental right that is crucial to many, including Muslims.

Clearly, the time has come to take a firm and uncompromising stand for free expression and against all forms of threats and censorship.

11 February is our chance to take that stand.

You need to be there.

Enough is enough.

NOTES:

Contact us for more information or with details of actions or events being organised outside of London:
Maryam Namazie
Anne Marie Waters
Spokespersons
One Law for All
BM Box 2387
London WC1N 3XX, UK
Tel: +44 (0) 7719166731
onelawforall@gmail.com
www.onelawforall.org.uk

To help with the costs of the rally and donate to the crucial work of One Law for All, please either send a cheque made payable to One Law for All to BM Box 2387, London WC1N 3XX, UK or pay via Paypal.

The One Law for All Campaign was launched on 10 December 2008, International Human Rights Day, to call on the UK Government to recognise that Sharia and religious courts are arbitrary and discriminatory against women and children in particular and that citizenship and human rights are non-negotiable. To join the campaign, sign our petition here.

Maryam Namazie: ‘For a Free And Secular Middle East And North Africa’

From Maryam Namazie from ‘One Law For All':

For Immediate Release, 27 October 2011

76 secularists and human rights campaigners, including Mina Ahadi, Nawal El Sadaawi, Marieme Helie Lucas, Hameeda Hussein, Ayesha Imam, Maryam Jamil, Maryam Namazie, Taslima Nasrin, Farida Shaheed, Fatou Sow, and Stasa Zajovic have signed on to a Manifesto for a Free and Secular Middle East and North Africa.
In light of the recent pronouncements of the unelected Libyan Transitional Council for ‘Sharia laws’, the signatories of the manifesto vehemently oppose the hijacking of the protests by Islamism or US-led militarism and unequivocally support the call for freedom and secularism made by citizens and particularly women in the region.
Secularism is a minimum precondition for a free and secular Middle East and for the recognition of women’s rights and equality.
We call on world citizens to support this important campaign by signing on to our petition: http://www.change.org/petitions/world-citizens-defend-a-free-and-secular-middle-east-and-north-africa.
We also ask that supporters click ‘like’ on our Facebook page to support this important campaign: http://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Free-and-Secular-Middle-East-and-North-Africa/271164176261820#!/pages/A-Free-and-Secular-Middle-East-and-North-Africa/271164176261820 and Tweet: #freesecularMENA in support of a free and secular Middle East and North Africa.
VERSION FRANÇAISE CI DESSOUS
FRENCH, ARABIC AND PERSIAN VERSIONS BELOW
 
Manifesto for a Secular Middle East and North Africa
The 2009 protests in Iran followed by the Arab Spring have the potential to herald a new dawn for the people of the region and the world. The protests have clearly shown that people in the region, like people everywhere, want to live 21st century lives.
We, the undersigned, emphasise their modern and human dimension and wholeheartedly welcome this immense and historical development. We are vehemently opposed to their hijacking by Islamism or US-led militarism and support the call for a free and secular Middle East and North Africa made by citizens and particularly women in the region.
Secularism is a minimum precondition for the freedom and equality of all citizens and includes:
1. Complete separation of religion from the state.
2. Abolition of religious laws in the family, civil and criminal codes.
3. Separation of religion from the educational system.
4. Freedom of religion and atheism as private beliefs.
5. Prohibition of sex apartheid and compulsory veiling.
SIGNATORIES
  1. Mina Ahadi, Spokesperson, International Committees against Stoning and Execution, Iran/Germany
  2. Marieme Helie Lucas, Sociologist, Founder and former international coordinator of Women Living Under Muslim Laws and founder of Secularism Is A Women’s Issue, Algeria/France
  3. Maryam Namazie, Spokesperson, Equal Rights Now – Organisation against Women’s Discrimination in Iran, Iran/UK
  4. Shahla Abghari, University Professor, Iran/USA
  5. Siavash Abghari, Esmail Khoi Foundation, Iran/USA
  6. Ahlam Akram, Palestinian Peace and Human Rights Writer and Campaigner, Palestine/UK
  7. Sargul Ahmad, Women’s Liberation in Iraq, Iraq/Canada
  8. Mahin Alipour, Coordinator, Equal Rights Now – Organisation against Women’s Discrimination in Iran, Iran/Sweden
  9. Reza Alkrami, Human Rights Activist, Iran/USA
  10. Farideh Arman, Coordinator, Committee to Defend Women’s Rights, Iran/Sweden
  11. Sultana Begum, Regional Gender Adviser, Diakonia Asia, Bangladesh
  12. Djemila Benhabib, Writer, Algeria/Canada
  13. Codou Bop, Journalist and Director of GREFELS, Dakar, Senegal
  14. Ariane Brunet, co-founder Urgent Action Fund, Québec, Canada
  15. Micheline Carrier, Sisyphe, Québec, Canada
  16. Patty Debonitas, Iran Solidarity, UK
  17. Denise Deliège Femmes En Noir, Belgium
  18. Equal Rights Now – Organisation against Women’s Discrimination in Iran, Sweden
  19. Fanny Filosof, Femmes en Noir, Belgium
  20. Mersedeh Ghaedi, New Channel TV Programme host, Iran/Norway
  21. Groupe de recherche sur les femmes et les lois, Dakar, Senegal
  22. Laura Guidetti, Marea Feminist Magazine, Italy
  23. Zeinabou Hadari, Centre Reines Daura, Niger
  24. Anissa Hélie, Historian, Algeria/France/USA
  25. Rohini Henssman, Human Rights Activist, India
  26. Hameeda Hossein, Chairperson Ain o Salish Kendra, Dhaka, Bangladesh
  27. Khayal Ibrahim, Women’s Liberation in Iraq, Iraq/Canada
  28. Leo Igwe, Founder, Nigerian Humanist Movement, Nigeria
  29. Ayesha Imam, Women’s Human Rights and Democracy Activist, Nigeria/Senegal
  30. International Campaign in Defence of Women’s Rights in Iran, Sweden
  31. International Committee against Execution, Germany
  32. International Committee against Stoning, Germany
  33. Iran Solidarity, Iran/UK
  34. Maryam Jamil, Women’s Liberation in Iraq, Iraq
  35. Sultana Kamal, Executive Director, Ain o Salish Kendra and Chairperson Transparency International, Bangladesh
  36. Abbas Kamil, Unity Against Unemployment in Iraq, Baghdad, Iraq
  37. Harsh Kapoor, South Asia Citizens Web, India
  38. Akbar Karimian, Human Rights Activist, Iran/UK
  39. Cherifa Kheddar, President of Djazairouna, Algeria
  40. Monica Lanfranco, Marea Feminist Magazine, Italy
  41. Houzan Mahmoud, Representative of Organisation of Women’s Freedom in Iraq, Iraq/UK
  42. Nahla Elgaali Mahmoud, Biologist, Sudan/UK
  43. Anwar Mir Sattari, Human rights Activist, Iran/Belgium
  44. Amena Mohsin, Professor, Dept. International Relations Dhaka University, Bangladesh
  45. Khawar Mumtaz, Director Shirkat Gah, Lahore, Pakistan
  46. Taslima Nasrin, Writer and Activist, Bangladesh
  47. U. M. Habibun Nessa, President, Naripokkho, Bangladesh
  48. Partow Nooriala, Poet, Writer and Human Rights Activist, Iran/USA
  49. Asghar Nosrati, Human Rights Activist, Iran/Sweden
  50. One Law for All, UK
  51. Pragna Patel, Southall Black Sisters, UK
  52. Fariborz Pooya, Iranian Secular Society, Iran/UK
  53. Protagora, Zagreb, Croatia
  54. Hassan Radwan, Activist, Egypt/UK
  55. Mary Jane Real, Women’s Human Rights Coalition, Manila, The Philippines
  56. Edith Rubinstein, Femmes en Noir, Belgium
  57. Nawal El Sadaawi, Writer, Egypt
  58. Fahimeh Sadeghi, Coordinator, International Federation of Iranian Refugees, Iran/Canada
  59. Gita Sahgal, Director, Centre for Secular Space, UK
  60. Nina Sankari, Secularist and Feminist, Poland
  61. Secularism Is A Women’s Issue (International Network)
  62. Aisha Lee Shaheed, London, UK
  63. Farida Shaheed, Shirkat Gah, Lahore, Pakistan
  64. Siba Shakib, Filmmaker, Writer and Activist, Iran/USA
  65. Sohaila Sharifi, Women’s Rights Campaigner, Iran/UK
  66. Issam Shukri, Head, Secularism and Civil Rights in Iraq, Iraq/Canada
  67. Southall Black Sisters, UK
  68. Fatou Sow, Sociologist CNRS, Dakar, Senegal
  69. Afsaneh Vahdat, Coordinator, International Campaign for Women’s Rights in Iran, Iran/Sweden
  70. Lino Veljak, Professor of Philosophy, Zagreb University, Croatia
  71. Fauzia Viqar, Director Advocacy and Communications, Shirkat Gah Women’s Resource Centre, Lahore, Pakistan
  72. Anne Marie Waters, One Law for All, UK
  73. Vivienne Wee, anthropologist, feminist and human rights activist, Singapore and Hong Kong, China
  74. Women In Black, Belgrade, Serbia
  75. Sara Zaker, Theatre Director, Bangladesh
  76. Stasa Zajovic, spokesperson Women in Black, Belgrade, Serbia
FRENCH
Manifeste pour la laicité au Moyen Orient et en Afrique du Nord
Les protestations de 2009 en Iran et le Printemps Arabe qui a suivi pourrait faire se lever une nouvelle aurore pour le peuple de la région et du monde. Les manifestations ont clairement montré que le peuple dans la région, comme partout, veut vivre au XXI° siècle.
 Nous sous signés, soulignons leur dimension moderne et humaine et soutenons de tout coeur cet immense tournant historique.  Nous nous opposons avec véhemence à ce qu’il soit détourné par l’islamisme ou par la militarisation sous l’égide des Etats Unis et reitérons l’appel pour un Moyen Orient et une Afrique du Nord libres et laiques, lancé par les citoyens et particulièrelent les femmes de la région.
 La laicité est le pré-requis minimum pour assurer la liberté et l’égalité de tous les citoyens, et cela inclue:
 1. la totale separation de la religion et de l’état.
2. l’abolition des lois religieuses en matière familiale et dans le code penal.
3. la séparation de la religion et du système d’éducation.
4. la liberté de religion et d’athéisme, définis comme croyances personnelles.
5. l’interdiction de l’apartheid sexuel et du voile obligatoire.
ARABIC
بيان من أجل شرق اوسط وشمال افريقيا علمانية
 إن احتجاجات إيران عام 2009 والربيع العربي الذي أعقبها تحمل أملاً بفجر جديد لشعوب المنطقة وللعالم. لقد أظهرت الاحتجاجات بشكل &#1608 ;اضح أن شعوب المنطقة، كغيرها من شعوب العالم، تسعي لحياه تواكب متطلبات القرن الحادي والعشرين.
 نحن، الموقعون أدناه، نؤكد على البعد الحديث والإنساني لهذه الثورات ونرحب ترحيبا حارا بهذا التطور التاريخي الكبير. ونحن ن&#159 3;ارض بشدّة سلب مكتسبات هذه الثورات سواء كان ذلك على يد الحركات الإسلامية أو السياسات العسكريتارية بقيادة امريكا، ونؤيد الدعوة لقيام شرق أوسط وشمال إفريقيا علمانية ب&# 1575;رادة المواطنين في المنطقة وخاصة النساء.
 إن العلمانية تمثّل الحد الأدنى من أجل تحقيق حرية ومساواة كل المواطنين، ويشمل ذلك:
 1. فصل الدين عن الدولة فصلاً تاما.
2. إلغاء التشريعات الدينية الخاصة بالأسرة والتشريعات المدنية والجنائية.
3. فصل الدين عن النظام التعليمي.
4. حرية الدين والإلحاد كمعتقدات شخصية.
5. منع سياسة التمييز الجنسي والحجاب الإجباري.
PERSIAN
مانیفست برای خاورمیانه- شمال آفریفای سکولار
مبارزات سال 88 (2009 میلادی) در ایران و در پی آن “بهار عربی” این ظرفیت را دارد که طلوعی تازه را به مردم منطقه و جهان نوید دهد. اعتراضات به روشنی میدهد که م&#1 585;دم این منطقه، نظیر مردم هر جای دیگر، خواهان یک زندگی قرن بیست و یکمی هستند.
ما امضاء کنندگان زیر بر ابعاد انسانی و مدرن این مبارزات تاکید میگذاریم و با تمام وجود از این تحول عظیم تاریخی استقبال میکنیم. ما قاطعانه مخال&#16 01;ت خود را با مصادره این انقلابات و مبارزات توسط اسلام گرایی و یا  میلیتاریسم (دولتی) تحت رهبری آمریکا اعلام میداریم و از فراخوان “یک خاورمیانه و شمال آفریقای آزاد و سکولا&#1 585;” حمایت میکنیم که توسط شهروندان این منطقه  بویژه زنان مطرح شده است.
سکولاریسم  پیش شرط حداقل برای آزادی و برابری همه شهروندان و دربرگیرنده این مفاد است:
١-جدائی کامل مذهب از دولت.
٢-الغای قوانین مذهبی در قوانین خانواده، مدنی و جنایی.
٣-جدائی مذهب از سیستم آموزش و پرورش.
٤-آزادی مذهب و بی مذهبی بعنوان اعتقادات شخصی.
٥-ممنوعیت آپارتاید جنسی و حجاب اجباری.
For more information, contact:
Marieme Helie Lucas
Maryam Namazie
For a Free and Secular Middle East and North Africa
BM Box 2387, London WC1N 3XX, UK

One Law for All events in London, UK

Just got this info from the ‘One Law for All’ folks:

HOLD THESE DATES

‘Enemies not Allies’ Seminar, 26 January 2011, 18.30 – 20.00 (Registration begins at 18.00), Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL (Holborn Tube)

Bigots and neo-Nazis feigning to campaign for rights… ‘anti-racist’ groups promoting fascism… ‘anti-war’ rallies run by supporters of terrorism and dictatorship… Enough!
The One Law for All campaign is holding a seminar to expose how important debates including on Sharia law have been hijacked by the far-Right to promote their racist agenda, and by anti-racist and anti-war groups to defend Islamism, both at the expense of people’s rights and lives. The seminar will focus on: The British National Party, the English Defence League, Stop Islamisation of Europe (also Stop Islamization of America), the Stop the War Coalition, the Respect Party, and Unite Against Fascism.
Speakers at the seminar are Adam Barnett (One Law for All), Rahila Gupta (Women’s Rights Campaigner), Marieme Helie Lucas (Secularism is a Women’s Issue), Ghaffar Hussain (Quilliam Foundation), Douglas Murray (Centre for Social Cohesion), Maryam Namazie (One Law for All), and Shiraz Maher (International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation), with John Adams (Emeritus Professor at the University of Hertfordshire) to chair.
Entry fee: £5 individuals; £10 voluntary and statutory organisations. For booking form and speaker bios visit http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/26-january-2010-seminar-london/.
International Conference on Women’s Rights, Sharia Law and Secularism, 12 March 2011, 10.00-19.00 hours, University of London Union, The Venue, Malet Street, London WC1E (Russell Square)

The one day conference to mark International Women’s Day will discuss the adverse impact of religious laws on the status of women.
Speakers include: Mina Ahadi (International Committee against Stoning), Karima Bennoune (Law Professor), Helle Merete Brix (Journalist), Nadia Geerts (Writer), Hammeda Hossain (South Asians for Human Rights), Monica Lanfranco (Journalist), Anne-marie Lizin (Honorary Speaker of Belgian Senate), Maryam Namazie (One Law for All and Iran Solidarity), Taslima Nasreen (Writer), Yasmin Rehman (Women’s Rights Activist), Nina Sankari (European Feminist Initiative Poland), Sohaila Sharifi (Equal Rights Now), Bahram Soroush (Civil Rights Activist), Daniel Salvatore Schiffer (Philosopher), Annie Sugier (la ligue du Droit International des Femmes), Anne Marie Waters (One Law for All), Linda Weil-Curiel (Lawyer), and Stasa Zajovic (Belgrade Women in Black).
Entry fee: £10 individuals; £3 unwaged and students. For booking form and speaker bios visit http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/12-march-2010-international-conference-on-women%e2%80%99s-rights-sharia-law-and-secularism-london/. The event is sponsored by the International Committee against Stoning, Iran Solidarity, Equal Rights Now and One Law for All.
Event against Stoning, 9 July 2011, 14.00-17.30 hours, University of London Union, The Venue, Malet Street, London WC1E (Russell Square)

The Event against Stoning marks International Day against Stoning and will include a film screening of The Stoning of Soraya M followed by a panel discussion including with film director Cyrus Nowrasteh and campaigners Mina Ahadi and Maryam Namazie. The event will be dedicated to Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani.
Entry fee: £10 individuals; £3 unwaged and students. For more information visit: http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/9-july-2011-event-against-stoning-london/. The event is sponsored by the International Committee against Stoning, Iran Solidarity, Equal Rights Now and One Law for All.
Save your place now

To register for the above events, send a completed booking form along with a cheque made payable to One Law for All to BM Box 2387, London WC1N 3XX, UK or pay via Paypal at: http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/donate/. Donations are also welcome.
For more information, contact:
Maryam Namazie
Spokesperson
One Law for All
BM Box 2387
London WC1N 3XX

July 11th – International Day Against Stoning

How sad that in the 21st century, it is still happening.

People are being stoned to death.

July 11th is the anniversary of the stoning of a woman who had been stoned – while strapped to a stretcher….

And let’s not forget Aisho Ibrahim Dhuhulow – the 13-year old who was stoned to death for the ‘crime’ of having been gang-raped.  The 1000 spectators tried to rush the executioners, to stop this Sharia-dictated monstrosity, only to have been fired upon with live ammo.  Some were injured, a little boy was killed.  Then, Aisha was stoned…

They dug her up 3 times – to see if she was dead yet:  then re-buried her in the ground up to her shoulders and stoned her  some more.

And she is not alone…

There are many men and women still facing this horrific death.  I admit – words fail me.

One Law For All has more details on the International Day Against Stoning!

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