Nazra for Feminist Studies issued today a report on the violations committed against women human rights defenders in Egypt in the period from August to December 2011.
This report aims to illustrate the ways in which the repressive policies of the past, especially those geared towards women human rights defenders (WHRDs) are still with us. Not only does this report illustrate the ways in which violations against WHRDs persist, but it also underlines the fact that the repressive practices undertaken by the state against WHRDs are escalating, especially under militarism.
Women who address human rights issues generally are at risk because they threaten the gender order. Women who dare to challenge social conventions, whether it is by their mere presence on the streets to chants against the regime or take part in a strike, are subject to sexual violence, threats, and derogatory public accusations aimed at discrediting their character.
The report recommends halting the smearing campaigns carried out against WHRDs, and to initiate an investigation with the perpetrators, especially those that occurred in the light of demonstrations and sit-ins, rather than excusing the violations committed, in order to end the persistent cases of impunity and achieve justice for the victims. The report also recommends the immediate cessation of targeting WHRDs to try to push them away from the public sphere.