Women's rights

  1. Fawzia Koofi, Leader of Movement of Change for Afghanistan

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    Video caption: Zeinab interviews Fawzia Koofi, first woman to lead a political party in Afghanistan.

    Zeinab Badawi interviews Fawzia Koofi, the first woman to lead a political party in Afghanistan and is part of an Afghan delegation in talks with the Taliban.

  2. Kamila Sidiqi - Afghan Deputy Commerce Minister, 2017-2019

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    Video caption: Stephen Sackur speaks to Kamila Sidiqi, a leading Afghan women's rights campaigner.

    Stephen Sackur speaks to Kamila Sidiqi, a leading Afghan women's rights campaigner, entrepreneur and government adviser under President Ghani. She escaped from Kabul as the Taliban took over.

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    Video caption: Afghan girls are ‘left in darkness’ by the Taliban

    BBC correspondent Yogita Limaye goes to the former women's affairs ministry in Kabul to question the Taliban on women's rights.

  4. Video content

    Video caption: Women in Latin America march for abortion rights

    Thousands of women demonstrate across Latin America for access to legal and safe abortions.

  5. Cameroon: A lifelong advocate for women and girls

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    Video caption: Marthe Wandou was the only girl in her village to go to university and get a degree.

    She was the only girl in her village to go to university. Now Marthe Wandou campaigns for the rights of other girls and women.

  6. Malala - her fears for the rights of Afghan women and girls

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    Video caption: An exclusive interview by Sima Kotecha - as the Taliban takes control of Afghanistan.

    The Pakistani women's rights activist Malala Yousafzai speaks exclusively to BBC Newsnight about her deep concern for women and minorities in Afghanistan.

  7. Little to celebrate on Women's Day in South Africa


    Samantha Granville

    BBC News, Johannesburg

    Women and girls at a protest against gender-based violence in Durban, in April 2021.

    Some 65 years ago tens of thousands of women descended in Pretoria, South Africa, and marched to Union Building to deliver petitions to the then prime minister in protest against the law that African women must carry passes.

    These passes, mandated by the apartheid government, restricted African women’s movement, and decided where they could live, when they could travel, and how they could work. African women had to carry these passes at all times and would be expected to show them frequently.

    Six decades later, though the passes no longer physically exist, some say there are “invisible passes”.

    “They [women] cannot walk freely in taxi-ranks without being harassed. They can’t be out at night without a fear of being kidnapped and they cannot even dress how they want to, because institutions in this country want to dictate their appearance to them,” said Julius Malema, the leader of South Africa’s EFF political party.

    Gender-based violence remains a major issue for South African society. The country has a devastatingly high gender violence rate. Since 2000, some 2,700 women have been murdered as a result of gender-based violence.

    From April 2019 to March 2020, the South African Police Service reported that there were 53,293 sexual offences. These included rapes, sexual assaults and attempted sexual assaults and contact sexual assaults.

    It’s for these reasons that gender based violence has become a secondary pandemic here in South Africa, which has become known as the "destination of femicide".

    Lisa Vetten, a researcher in violence against women, notes that the last time a study was done to look at rape and its underreporting in South Africa was in 1997. For her, it is hard to say if the numbers have gone up or down, or what would help the situation when there has been a lack of information for the last two decades.

    Ms Vetten also says the day has some meaning that can feel a little bit empty. “It’s a fairly ritualised rehearsal from how far we’ve come since 1956, but how far we have to go. That is frustrating because we have the same things to say every year. 'Yes, we’ve got this to celebrate but no this is still wrong'."

    For others like Dumisani Chauke, a gender activist in Johannesburg working with young women, Women’s Day remains a hopeful reminder.

    “It's an opportunity to salute those that have paved the way for us. It's an opportunity to salute those women who stand tall and allow us to stand on their shoulders so we can stand even taller,” she says. “It's an opportunity to share stories that inspire and empower those coming after us.”

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    Video caption: Bank of Ireland: Harassment case 'shows employers must protect women'