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Jamila Afghani, new director of our partner organization Medica Afghanistan since february 2019, has been campaigning for women and girls in Afghanistan for 20 years as a women activist and human rights defender. "We try to empower women. They should understand about their rights and they should have a prosperous, dignified life." she says.

Among others she founded the Noor Educational and Capacity Development Organization, which, in addition to income generation projects and advocacy work, particularly provides education for women. "Education is very important in Islamic religion. And today we are in a condition that we are not allowed to go to school. But the Holy Prophet orders us, even go to Cina to seek knowledge." Through her programs more than 50,000 women have been empowered and educated. " I know it's a long journey ahead. I have lots of things to do. We are human beings, and this is our responsibility: to struggle."


Copyright: Aurora Humanitarian Initiative

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News about the evaluation report: "Make added value of well-trained health personnel more visible"
Transnational Health Training Program (THTP) in Afghanistan

The Transnational Health Training Program (THTP) is a three-year intervention implemented between 2015 and 2018 in Afghanistan and Bosnia and Herzegovina. In Afghanistan it is put into practice by the national non-governmental organization Medica Afghanistan and carried out in the three afghan provinces Kabul, Herat and Balkh. The project contributes to an increased access to quality health care services for women and girls affected by sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) through improving the quality of care of health care service providers at the local and national level. Its core part is the qualification of health care staff in SGBV and a stress and trauma-sensitive approach® from medica mondiale (STA) towards affected women and girls. By acquiring new knowledge, skills and attitudes on the nature and effects of traumatic events, the interaction between health-care providers and clients shall be improved, and shall have an empowering effect on the women affected by SGBV. The project also aims to sensitize the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) at the national and provincial level on the need for improved knowledge, skills and attitudes regarding trauma and its consequences for women and their children.

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News about the evaluation report: "Together for a strong network against violence"
Strengthening local protection and counselling for women and girls affected by gender based violence in IDP shelters and host communities

This medica mondiale e.V. and HAUKARI e.V. project targets to strengthen local protection and counselling for women and girls affected by (sexualised) gender-based violence ((S)GBV) in internally displaced persons (IDP)/refugee shelters and camps, and host communities. This shall be reached (overall objective) by enhancing qualification, organizational capacities and cooperation between local governmental and non-governmental structures of protection and counselling for the affected. The project has been facilitated in two provinces, Duhok and Sulaymaniyah (especially Garmyan) in the Kurdistan Region in Iraq (KRI). The project has been funded by the BMZ (ÜH) and implemented from July 2016 to August 2018.

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Practiced by medica mondiale and its partner organisations
Underlying direct forms of violence are other more pervasive forms of violence that are often unseen and unrecognized, such as: structural violence, through which people are unequally treated or deprived of their fundamental human rights, and symbolic violence, which legitimizes direct and structural violence e.g. through discriminatory narratives. All three forms of violence are the bases for conflict-related sexualised violence. The graph shows how medica mondiale acts against it.

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Copyright: Deutsche Welle

Sybille Fezer, Executive Member of the Board Programs at medica mondiale, speaks in an interview with Deutsche Welle about UN Resolution 2467, which was adopted on 22.04.2019.

The UN Security Council calls on UN member states in Resolution 2467 to strengthen their legislation on sexual violence in war and crisis areas and to expand the persecution of perpetrators.

Sybille Fezer welcomes the fact that german Foreign Minister Heiko Maas and the German government are campaigning for the Agenda "Women, Peace, Security" and sexualized violence in wars as part of their non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council. "Even within the UN-Security Council there are still a lot of backlashes towards women's rights in the members that we have there. It's not about having the legal framework, it's about implementing it."

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Towards a Survivor-Centered Approach: Five Elements to Support Women and Girls after Sexualized and Gender-Based Violence in Armed Conflict
Rape is a massive attack on a person’s dignity. In times of peace, 50-65 percent of people affected develop traumatic stress reactions with severe long-term consequences. These might include a tendency to withdraw from social life, as well as chronic pain or sleep disturbances. In war and war-like conflicts, the effects of sexualized violence are exacerbated. Women who have experienced gender-based violence often face ongoing insecurity, endangerment and poverty, as well as – as a consequence of rape – stigmatization and social exclusion. To address the needs of women and girls after gender-based violence in armed conflicts, the women’s rights organization medica mondiale has developed an integrated, survivor-centered approach.

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As a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council, Germany will be helping to shape international security policy in the years 2019 to 2020. Against this backdrop, the German government has declared the «Women, Peace and Security» agenda to be one of the focal points of its work. It is envisaged that Germany’s presidency of the UN Security Council in April 2019 will be devoted to the struggle against sexualised violence during conflicts. One of the German government’s declared aims is to introduce a further resolution in the UN body with its stated objective of plugging the «normative gaps» and thus affording women and girls greater protection from violence.

The undersigning organisations expressly welcome the fact that Germany is addressing this core issue. However, a source of concern to us is the initiative to adopt a further resolution. Given the further hardening of antidemocratic and decidedly misogynistic stances in the UN Security Council, we believe there is a danger of a weak resolution text ultimately being negotiated and adopted. Some powerful members of the Security Council, such as Russia, China and the USA, are undermining women’s rights and once again questioning, for example, women’s and girls’ right to self-determination. Through such actions, the achievements that have already been made could be shattered and the «Women, Peace and Security» agenda overall decisively weakened.

Signed by:
Heinrich Böll Stiftung
medica mondiale
care
Deutscher Frauenrat
OWEN – Mobile Akademie für Geschlechterdemokratie und Friedensförderung e.V.
UN Women
Frauen Netzwerk für Frieden
CFFP – Center for Feminist Foreign Policy
The Canaan Project
Deutscher Frauenring e.V.

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Medica Afghanistan position paper on amending article 640(2) of the penal code on virginity testing and criminalising gynecological and rectal examinations as torture in a separate provision under the penal code 2018.
On the occasion of celebrating 8th of March Women's International Day 2019, Medica Afghanistan declares its position on amending Article 640 of the Penal Code and criminalizing all forms of gynecological and rectal testing as an act of torture under the Penal Code.

Gynecological and rectal examinations, so called "virginity tests", are conducted to prove adultery and sodomy. But the examination has no scientific basis and causes severe trauma.

Medica Afghanistan is against these examinations and calls for the serious attention of the government, especially H.E President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani, to order for its complete prohibition in adultery and sodomy cases and the implementation of the Ministry of Public Healths (MOPH) Gender Based Violence Treatment Protocol in Rape cases.

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