Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education

Front Page



UK Politics







Talking Point

In Depth

On Air

Low Graphics

Monday, March 8, 1999 Published at 21:45 GMT

World: South Asia

Net links women across the world

Russian women make the most of their holiday to go on a march

Women around the world are being brought together with a global video conference to mark International Women's Day.

In the video, which is being streamed live on the Internet by the UN, women discuss their experiences of rape, domestic assault, forced prostitution and harassment in the workplace.

The UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, said these and other forms of violence against women cut across religious and regional boundaries.

[ image:  ]
Discussions will also focus on traditional practices such as female circumcision, which UN figures say account for two million victims a year in Pakistan, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, and several African and Middle Eastern countries.

The video, A World Free of Violence Against Women, will link five cities: Strasbourg, Mexico City, Nairobi, Delhi, and New York.

It will give human rights activists, government representatives, academics, and ordinary women whose lives have been affected by violence a chance to talk directly to UN decision-makers.

Many of the women taking part have already used their personal experience of violence to change policies or inspire grass roots initiatives.

The UN Development Fund for Women, Unifem, has also been sponsoring a "virtual working group" for Internet-users, which will be fed into the video conference.

Taleban attack Women's Day

The Taleban Movement in Afghanistan is another focus of criticism on International Women's Day.

[ image:  ]
Their policies - which include forbidding women from working in public, except for a small number in the medical sector, and banning education for women and girls - have been widely condemned by the international community.

But the Taleban have responded by saying the marking of International Women's Day is a sign that the West has not given full rights to women, whereas in Afghanistan women are respected according to Islamic law.

Advanced options | Search tips

Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©

Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia

Relevant Stories

08 Mar 99 | World
Seeing red: The picture gallery

08 Mar 99 | South Asia
Islamists condemn women's role

08 Mar 99 | South Asia
Women and the Taleban

08 Mar 99 | Health
Action urged on female circumcision

04 Mar 99 | Aids
All aboard the Aids train

Internet Links

International Women's Day - United Nations

Women's Human Rights - Unifem

History of International Women's Day

'A flower for the women of Kabul' - IWD - EU

Live Stream of global video conference

Join UN Internet Working Group on women and violence

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

In this section

Sharif: I'm innocent

India's malnutrition 'crisis'

Tamil rebels consolidate gains

From Sport
Saqlain stars in Aussie collapse

Pakistan fears Afghan exodus

Hindu-Buddhist conference in Nepal

Afghan clerics issue bin Laden fatwa

Culture awards at Asian festival

Gandhi pleads for husband's killer

UN condemns Afghan bombing

Gandhi prize for Bangladeshi