Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Why you should know about Lubna Hussein

Lubna Hussein is facing a trial in Sudan, and a punishment of 40 lashes, for wearing pants in public that were deemed to be "indecent." (Far as I can tell, that would be any pants on a woman in Sudan.) According to CNN, she and 18 other women were arrested July 3 at a restaurant "after police burst in and checked women for their clothing."

But Hussein has taken this arrest and turned it into a way to shed light on how Sudan treats women, and to try to get this Islamic-based law on "indecency" overturned. She is a former UN employee -- former, because she quit her job to make sure that she doesn't receive any kind of immunity in this case, which she could have received as a UN employee. She has welcomed a public flogging, even sending out invitations to it.

She is taking a stand, and other women are joining her. Women who rallied outside her trial today, some wearing pants, were beaten by police and had tear gas used on them.

Hussein's trial has been delayed until September to clarify if her UN resignation went through. A toast to her, to her pants and to the women out there supporting her and standing up for themselves.

Here is the BBC's story about it, they have an audio interview with Hussein. By the way, tribal fighters in southern Sudan have killed 185 people, most of them women and children.

UPDATE (9/7): A court has found Hussein guilty, but instead of receiving lashes she received a monetary fine. She has said she will not pay the fine, around $200 (U.S.), and that she plans to appeal the case. (New York Times story here.)


Matt Osborne said...

There really needs to be an award of some kind for people like her.

ceebeebonz said...

Sharia law is just evil. Anyone who thinks sharia law is ok seriously needs their head examined.

I hope sharia law CEASES to exist.


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