position:prominent human rights lawyer

  • Rights activists call for stringent laws to stop premature marriages

    Thailand has one of the highest rates of youth marriages in the region, with Unicef figures showing one of every seven Thai teen aged 15 to 19 being married.

    Premature marriage in Thailand occurs for many reasons, including cultural and economic. While the legal age of marriage is 18, the Thai Civil Code allows parents to approve marriage at age 17, and younger with a court’s permission.

    An exception is made for the four predominantly Muslim provinces of Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat and Satun where girls can get married after menstruation – which usually occurs at around 12 – under Islamic law.

    “While some progressive Muslim communities want to set a clear standard [for a minimum marriage age], some religious leaders who benefit from organising these marriages don’t want to change and they use religious faith as their explanation,” Sanphasit said.

    “This has led to many Malaysian men exploiting the loopholes to marry children,” he said. In Malaysia, a religious court must approve a marriage involving a Muslim girl under age 16.

    L’affaire fait du bruit en #Malaisie : un imam malaisien de 41 ans « épouse » une fille thaïlandaise malaise (des provinces malaises du Sud annexé de longue date par le Siam), l’affaire est ébruité par l’une de ses épouses qu’il n’avait pas prévenue. Il aurait profité d’une plus grande vulnérabilité (économique et juridique) des filles en #Thaïlande, et d’autant plus dans les provinces du Sud. Et je vous passe le détail...

    #mariage_forcé #pédo-viol

    • L’affaire a retenu l’attention du NY Times. Les autorités malaisiennes ne s’en sortent pas pire que les nôtres quand un adulte avec un an de taule pour violences a extorqué une fellation dans un lieu public à une enfant de 11 ans et que le procès a tourné autour de sa moralité à elle.

      11 and Married : Malaysia Spars Over an Age-Old Practice - The New York Times

      Ayu’s marriage to Che Abdul Karim Che Abdul Hamid, a 41-year-old rubber trader with a prominent role at his mosque and a fleet of fancy cars, has reignited debate in Malaysia about the persistence of conservative Islamic traditions in this modern, multiethnic democracy.

      In its election manifesto, the opposition coalition that won power in May promised to outlaw child marriage.

      Last year, Malaysia criminalized sexual grooming, in which an adult creates an emotional bond with a child for the purpose of sexual exploitation.

      “The girl is a victim, no doubt about it,” said Latheefa Koya, a prominent human rights lawyer. “Why are we dillydallying in protecting a child? The lack of serious urgency about this case is disturbing,” she added.

      The Shariah Court in Kelantan this month fined him $450 for the infraction of marrying Ayu in neighboring Thailand without the court’s prior permission.

      Malaysian child rights activists said that about 15,000 girls under 15 were in child marriages in 2010. Globally, Unicef estimates that there are about 650 million girls and women of various faiths who were wed before they turned 18.

      This month, Malaysia’s Islamic affairs minister, Mujahid Yusof Rawa, said that his ministry had begun efforts to prohibit child marriage for Muslims, even as he cautioned that putting such a ban into effect would take time.

      Les deux lois qui clashent en Malaisie, c’est l’héritage de la politique identitaire de l’Umno, avec laquelle on ne sait pas si Harapan va pouvoir rompre.

  • #Saudi_Arabia Adds 5 Years to #Human_Rights Lawyer’s Prison Sentence

    A Saudi judge has sentenced a prominent human rights lawyer to an additional five years in jail, after he refused to show remorse or recognize the court that handed down his original 10-year term for sedition. #Waleed_Abu_al-Khair, founder and director of watchdog group Monitor of Human Rights in Saudi Arabia (MHRSA), was sentenced last year to 10 years in jail on charges that included breaking his allegiance to King Abdullah, showing disrespect for the authorities and creating an unauthorized association. read more


  • In Lebanon, it’s silly censorship time

    Last year, a coalition of the major cultural organizations in Lebanon (such as Metropolis DC, Ashkal Alwan, Né à Beyrouth, among others) grouped under Marsad al-Raqaba (“The Censorship Observatory”), and organized the first collective effort to provide a comprehensive assessment of censorship exercised by state institutions.

    Led by prominent human rights lawyer Nizar Saghieh, the Observatory’s research exposed the degree to which political and religious leaders are directly involved in censorship cases. It documented how General Security’s censorship department routinely sends films and other creative works that might upset religious institutions to these bodies (like Dar al-Fatwa, the highest Sunni religious authority, or the Catholic Information Center), and almost always complies with their wishes on whether to excise scenes or ban a work altogether.