Women Rights and Islam : A study of women rights and effects of Islamic fundamentalism and Muslim feminism in the Kurdish area of Iraq

University essay from Linköpings universitet/Ekonomiska institutionen

Abstract: Lack of women rights in the international society is something that UN and other international human organizations are striving against. Women oppression is common in many countries, but is often connected with the Muslim countries. Women oppression is something that is against UN: s definition of human rights. The international society has therefore tried to protect the women, and has formed resolutions, conventions and so on, for their security. According to the Iraqi regime, human rights are an important question. The country has therefore signed the UN: s convention about women rights. Since the year of 1992, when the Kurdish area of Iraq became self- governed, Kurdistan has started programs that favour women rights. Organizations and institutions have for example been established, that are struggling for the women in the society. The ruling government has also instituted some laws that favour women rights. Islamic fundamentalism and Muslim feminism are two theories that today have supporters in the international society. Both of those theories and their supporters believes in the Quran and use it to justify their own actions, but in different ways. The fundamentalists emphasize the differences that, by the nature, exist between the sexes. According to the fundamentalists, women and men have different responsibilities in the society. The feminists on the other hand believe in equality between the sexes and mean that women oppression has its origin in an erroneous interpretation of the Quran. Different kinds of crimes against women rights issues are today common in Kurdistan. Many of those crimes don’t have any support in neither UN, nor the Quran. Muslim feminists, the department for human rights and the women organizations all has agreed about the meaning of women rights. They believe in UN: s definition of women rights and they all use the Quran to justify women right issues. Islamic fundamentalists on the other hand also use the Quran for justifying their actions, but they don’t believe in UN: s definition of women rights. So both Muslim feminists and Islamic fundamentalists exist today in Kurdistan, and their engagement in women issues is therefore affecting the work of the organizations and the department.

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