Women Will Win In February

Mon, Jan 4, 1999


Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty

Ms. Borujerdi, deputy interior minister for women’s affairs, stated that 25 percent of the municipal council seats must go to women, “Aria” reported on 28 December. So far, said Borujerdi, women have registered as candidates in 230 towns. Two days earlier, the establishment and licensing of the Islamic Assembly of Women was announced, according to an Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) report. The group’s secretary-general, parliamentarian Fatemeh Karrubi, called on “women thinkers” to join. The organization believes “there is a need for the formation of women-only groups to encourage women to undertake a greater role in social and political activities.” The statement added that “in some areas women even have surpassed men.”

This positive note was echoed by Mahnaz Afkhami of the Sisterhood is Global Institute in an interview with RFE/RL’s Persian Service on 24 December. “Iranian women — from all classes and walks of life — are accomplishing wonderful and courageous things.” She went on to say that an interesting debate has emerged due to a “clash between backward laws and a civilized and modern society.” According to Afkhami, women are at the forefront of reconsidering the fundamentalism Iran experienced at a national level.


About Mahnaz Afkhami

A lifetime advocate for the rights of women, Mahnaz Afkhami works with activists across the world, especially in Muslim majority societies, to help women become leaders. She is Founder and President of Women’s Learning Partnership for Rights, Development, and Peace (WLP), Executive Director of Foundation for Iranian Studies...more

Quotables – Iran Women’s Movement

"Now, when I look back [on the work of the WOI], it seems to me that our main mistake was not that we did not do other things which we should have done. Our main mistake was that we created conditions in which the contradictions related to modernity, progress, equality, and human rights, especially women’s rights, increased and the reaction to our work put perhaps too much pressure on the country’s social fabric." - Fate of the family protection law

"Iran’s One Million Signatures Campaign for the Reform of Discriminatory Laws is an extraordinary phenomenon. It is democratic, nonhierarchical, open, and evolving in a polity that is none of those things." - Iranian Women’s One Million Signatures Campaign for Equality: The Inside Story, Foreword

At the time of her execution, [Ms. Parsay] wrote one of the most moving letters to her children. And in that she expressed the same courage and the same steadfast belief in her principles that she had followed all of her life. And that was that: I’m a doctor. I know what it means to die, that takes only a minute. I’m not afraid of that. What I’m afraid of is to be pressured into denying 50 years of service to women. - Executed But Not Forgotten

“Prostitution was the code word for activism during the early part of the revolution” - I Was Iran's Last Woman Minister