By Sara Gomez
By Sara Gomez
Fez – The ISIS Center for Women and Development (ICWAD) will hold an international forum at the Palais des Congrès in Fez, on May 29-31 in response to the increase of violence toward women and girls following the Arab Spring.
The post-Arab spring world has proven to be nothing short of violent, especially for North African and Middle Eastern women. These women have only continued to reap the negative effects of the violent world they live in.
The end of the Arab spring has seen an increase in Jihad brainwashing, as well as wearing of the niqab (total veiling), stoning of women suspected of adultery, female genital mutilation for females aged 11 to 46, assassination of female activists, enslavement, and other forms of violence. They add to the list of already existing abuses towards women in the regions;, such as domestic battery, sexual harassment, forced marriage, and rape.
With the help of organizing committees and guest speakers from all over the world, the ICWAD is digging deeper into the Jihadist roots of the problem to raise awareness and propose strategies, such as education reform, to eventually put an end to the increased abuse.
The discussions will center around seven major topics, including the escalation of violence against women in general and in both regions, the impact of masculinity, the patriarchy and violence, and international networking in the face of a transnational violence.
The forum will be split up into nine sessions. The first three, on Friday, May 29th, will begin at 8:00 am and end at 8:00 pm. These will focus primarily on the causes and effects of the escalation of violence against women in the Middle East and some cultural, religious, and political practices that have had a negative impact on the safety of women.
Saturday’s four sessions will vary in subject matter, ranging from violence in North Africa to Masculinity and Socio Psychology. A documentary touching on the problem of honor crimes will also be shown on this day.
On Sunday there will only be two sessions, running from 9:15 am to noon, focused on the efforts being made locally and internationally to fight violence.
Some sessions will be offered in French, although most will be presented in Arabic speeches with translations in French and English. They will be followed with discussions and coffee breaks. Additionally, there will be books, paintings, and feminine products on exhibit.