EPOC Interview: Mahnaz Afkhami on How the Struggle for More Rights in Iran Has Yielded Gains (In English and Portuguese)

In Iran, women are still fighting for the right to see a game of volleyball. In an interview with Brazilian online magazine EPOCA (TIME), Iranian ex-minister in exile explains how the struggle for more rights in the country earned achievements over the years. In the episode of the game of volleyball (and Ghoncheh Ghavami), Afkhami believes the incessant media coverage may in some way, open the eyes of the regime. “We hope that the weight of condemnation from the international community to do with the Islamic Republic to reconsider their disregard for human rights, especially the rights of women.”

World activists demand release of Suu Kyi

The Jakarta Post / By Lilian Budianto
Iran’s Mahnaz Afkhami, Russia’s Dokka Itslaev, Venezuela’s Roberto Patino and Syria’s Radwan Ziadeh will receive the John Boyce Hurford honor. Hurford was a philanthropist who helped form the World Movement for Democracy, which is meeting in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Iran’s New Crackdown on Women

The Daily Beast / By Dana Goldstein
Mahnaz Afkhami says that in recent months, the Iranian government has encouraged civil-rights and pro-democracy leaders to emigrate, as an alterative to lengthy imprisonments or executions that could further inflame a restive public. “The idea is to make sure they leave the country. That’s how they become irrelevant actually, relative to the kind of role they can play when they’re inside. ”

Iranian Women Campaign To End Discriminatory Laws Against Them

VOA News / By Judith Latham / Listen
One way the One Million Signatures Campaign has overcome those barriers is by reaching out to women through “one-on-one” contact. Afkhami said women in the campaign, who go into private homes as well as to places where women gather, try to get other women to sign on to the petition for change. “But if they don’t, they leave the information with them because the aim is to get one million activists, not so much one million signatures,” she said.

Iran’s Million Signatures Campaign: A Leading Voice for Democracy

Democracy Digest / By David Lowe
The volume is the second in a series of translations brought forth by the Women’s Learning Partnership (WLP), an international organization that actively promotes the rights of women in developing societies. As the WLP’s founder and president Mahnaz Afkhami notes, “In the end, the simple courage and perseverance of women whose peaceful signature-gathering is condemned as a crime against the state reminds us that ideas and beliefs cannot be silenced.”

The Cup’s Half Full for Middle Eastern Feminists

Ms. Magazine / By Carole Joffe
Despite shortcomings in its enforcement, CEDAW (Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women)—the United Nations’ international women’s rights treaty—has brought progress to women in the Middle East, according to women leaders from the region at a recent panel celebrating of its 30th anniversary.

A Woman For All Seasons (In Persian)

On November 6, Ms. Afkhami was featured on Mehdi Falahati’s Persian-language program “Rou dar Rou” (Face-to-Face), produced by Voice of America. During the interview she discussed her professional journey, as well as the role of women in Iran’s democracy movement and their use of ICTs to take their message to the international community.

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