Voices from Russia

Sunday, 13 May 2018

World Defends Sudanese Rape Victim Condemned to Death

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An online campaign is gaining momentum to defend a 19-year-old Sudanese woman sentenced to death for murdering her husband, who she says raped her after she was forced to marry him. The story of Noura Hussein received international attention when the details of her case circulated on social media and via an online petition on Change.org. In 2016, Hussein attempted to escape her arranged marriage, but her in-laws forcibly restrained her as her husband raped her to consummate their vows. Sarah el-Hasan, a rights activist supporting Hussein’s case, told al-Jazeera:

She wouldn’t have sex with the man; he recruited some of his cousins and brought them home where they held her down while her husband raped her.

Her lawyer Ahmed Sebair said:

The following night, when her husband tried to rape her again, Hussein stabbed him with a knife and killed him.

On Thursday, Hussein’s supporters stood behind her in the Omdurman courtroom as the judge condemned her to death by hanging after her husband’s family refused financial compensation for the killing, demanding instead that she face execution. Seif Magango, of Amnesty International said:

The death penalty is the ultimate cruel, inhuman, and degrading punishment, and to apply it to a rape victim only highlights the failure of the Sudanese authorities to acknowledge the violence she endured. Marital rape… despite being a taboo… is still a common occurrence in Sudanese society.

Nahid Gabralla is the director of NGO SEEMA, which assists gender-based violence victims and survivors. Gabralla said:

In my work, I’ve seen other cases like this. The suffering of Sudanese women happens all the time. The case of Noura is different. She stood for her rights.

Magango said:

This girl is a victim. She was married off at the tender age of 16 against her will and she stood up against that and refused to be forced into marriage. The death that took place was an act of self-defence and it’s a travesty of justice that she is at risk of being murdered, being killed by the state, only for defending herself and that is something that needs to be corrected and this death penalty, this death sentence, must be revoked.

Hussein’s lawyers have just under two weeks to appeal the conviction.

12 May 2018

TeleSur

https://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/World-Defends-Sudanese-Rape-Victim-Condemned-to-Death-20180512-0013.html

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Monday, 15 January 2018

Another Cultural Myth That Must Go: Menstruating Women Told Not to Cross River

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Beliefs can be useful… if they help. In Ghana, some beliefs are decidedly not helping. In a nod to the persistence of cultural taboos surrounding the natural process of menstruation, many women and girls can’t travel or go to school because a river god decreed… although they haven’t made the decree public… that they may not cross during their normal monthly biological cycle. The River Ofin, a boundary between the Ashanti and Central Regions of Ghana, supposedly has a guardian god who… if you can believe certain regional officials… decreed that women and girls couldn’t cross while menstruating, preventing vital travel and school attendance. Shamima Muslim Alhassan, the UNESCO menstrual hygiene ambassador, noted that the apparently anonymous deity travel directive is a violation of women’s rights and a violation of a child’s right to education:

It seems the gods are really powerful aren’t they? I think that we need to ask for some form of accountability from these gods.

According to the BBC, Kwamena Duncan, the Ghanian Central Regional Minister, indicated that he’d take the matter seriously by speaking to an Ashanti regional minister to find a solution.

Formed in 1946, UNESCO is the UN humanitarian assistance provider for children and mothers in developing countries. It estimates that at least one in ten female students in the region isn’t able to attend school when they menstruate. A recent World Bank report also notes that over 11 million women in Ghana lack appropriate hygiene and sanitation resources. Human rights issues resulting from cultural myths surrounding the biological process of menstruation persist, including in the island nation of Madagascar, where women are taught to avoid bathing during their period, and in rural areas of mountainous Nepal, where menstruating women must sleep in huts away from family.

15 January 2018

Sputnik International

https://sputniknews.com/africa/201801151060751990-myths-surrounding-the-human-body/

Saturday, 18 February 2017

18 February 2017. Milunka Savić… Serbia’s Warrior Heroine

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The crackbrained “conservatives” are fond of telling us that women are unsuitable to face the rigours of combat. I’d submit that the story of Milunka Savić debunks that rightwing fable. She fought in the Balkan Wars and the First World War, and won many decorations, including foreign ones, for her bravery. Yes… this may only apply to only some women… but that cohort should have the right to fight (indeed, there are many women fighting in the patriot forces in the Donbass against the Uniate fascist aggressors today).

Oppose all lunatic rightwingers (especially, “libertarians” and so-called “paleocons”) wherever you may find them. They’re ravening enemies of decency, humanity, and true spirituality. No good can come of any “dialogue” with such sorts. They’ve chosen to follow a monstrous ideology (Libertarianism in particular and “conservatism” in general put too much trust in the basic goodness and perfectibility of mankind). Trust me, you and I can’t change that. We can only wait and hope for the best.

BMD

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Drinking to Remember: Your Coffee Habit May Protect Against Dementia

Filed under: health care/social issues,science — 01varvara @ 00.00
Tags: , , , ,

01 Woman Drinking Coffee

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According to evidence from a new study in the Journals of Gerontology, coffee drinkers, take comfort… your beverage of choice may be helping your brain. Ira Driscoll, the study’s lead author and psychology professor at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel:

The mounting evidence of caffeine consumption as a potentially protective factor against cognitive impairment is exciting, given that caffeine is also an easily modifiable dietary factor.

Study results, first published online in late September, found that older women who consumed more caffeine suffered less cognitive impairment in the form of dementia. The study tracked 6,467 women who self-reported their caffeine intake over ten years. Those who drank more than 261 milligrams of caffeine saw their risk of developing dementia or some other form of global cognitive impairment drop by 36 percent. Researchers say that this is a significant relationship, although it stops short of establishing cause and effect. Getting that much caffeine would take three regular eight-ounce cups of coffee, five or six cups of black tea, or more than seven cans of Coke (or, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest, one 12-ounce cup of Starbucks brewed coffee). That may sound like a lot, but the FDA and several other major food safety authorities call 300 to 400 mg per day “moderate consumption”, which isn’t associated with adverse health effects in most healthy adults. Studies over the past 20 years have found that American adults consume between 165-300 mg of caffeine a day on average.  Driscoll explained:

While we can’t make a direct link between higher caffeine consumption and lower incidence of cognitive impairment and dementia, with further study, we can better quantify its relationship with cognitive health outcomes. Research on this topic will be beneficial not only from a preventative standpoint but also to better understand the underlying mechanisms and their involvement in dementia and cognitive impairment.

The study used participants from the Women’s Health Initiative Memory Study, funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, who reported some level of caffeine consumption. Driscoll and her colleagues gathered data using questions about how often and how much coffee, tea, and cola beverages the women drank, and combined that with information gathered from yearly assessments of cognitive function over a period of up to ten years. In that period, 388 participants in the study received a diagnosis of probable dementia or some form of cognitive impairment. The study found that participants who consumed more than the median caffeine intake for the group… 261 mg per day… were diagnosed with cognitive impairment less often than those who consumed less caffeine. Researchers adjusted results to take into account factors like hormone therapy, age, race, education, body mass index, sleep quality, depression, hypertension, prior cardiovascular disease, diabetes, smoking, and alcohol consumption.

The new research noted in its conclusion that caffeine and its relationship to dementia has been studied many times. Their findings, suggesting lower odds of cognitive impairment in older women consuming more caffeine than the group’s baseline average, “are consistent with the existing literature showing an inverse association between caffeine intake and age-related cognitive impairment”. The study also noted its demographic limitations, specifically that it was confined to postmenopausal women, many of whom were highly-educated, as well as reporting limitations, in that the researchers didn’t collect data about caffeine sources beyond caffeinated beverages, meaning that they have underestimated consumption. The study said:

We need further research in order to assess or confirm the exposure through more objective biological assays compared to self-reported caffeine intake, and to isolate potential acute effects that caffeine may have on cognitive performance.

4 October 2016

Sputnik International

https://sputniknews.com/art_living/201610041046002586-caffeine-may-prevent-dementia-study/

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