Following The Arab Spring – Facebook Campaign Titled ‘The Uprising Of Women In The Arab World’



Inspired by the Arab Spring uprisings, four Arab women have launched a campaign titled “The Uprising of Women in the Arab World,” aimed at gaining “freedom, independence and security” for Arab women. The campaign promotes gender equality in accordance with the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and calls to grant women freedom in the domains of expression, thought, schooling, employment, and the freedom to dress as they please, as well as political rights. The campaign’s Facebook page[1] features the full text of the Human Rights Declaration in Arabic, and there is also an official Twitter account.[2]

The campaign, which was launched online on October 1, 2012, has so far received the support of over 55,000 men and women from around the world, including prominent women activists such as 2011 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Tawakkol Karman; Egyptian physician and writer Dr. Nawal Al-Sa’adawi; Samira Ibrahim, an Egyptian activist who exposed the virginity checks performed by an Egyptian military doctor on female protestors during the revolution; Saudi women’s rights activist Manal Al-Sharif; and Tunisian actress Hend Sabry.

At the suggestion of the campaign organizers, supporters have uploaded images of themselves holding up signs explaining why they back the campaign (see below). The supporters express protest over the patriarchal character of Arab society and the attitudes that objectify women and regard them as servants of their husbands and families; over the oppression of women and discrimination against them, and over such phenomena as child marriages, sexual abuse and harassment, and female circumcision. It should be mentioned that among the supporters who have uploaded pictures are many men, who cited the same reasons.

Amal from Saudi Arabia: “I support the Uprising of Women in the Arab World because I am  tired of asking my guardian’s permission for everything, including opening a bank account, traveling, seeking medical treatment, working, buying real-estate, conducting any business transaction, and  calling a driver. Enough!”

Written By: B. Chernitsky – MEMRI
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  1. As part of the campaign, Dana Bakdounis, a young Syrian oppositionist,
    posted a photo of herself holding up her passport photo, in which she is
    wearing a hijab. She wrote: “I support the Uprising of Women in the
    Arab World because for 20 years I was forbidden to feel the wind on my
    body and hair.” According to the campaign organizers, the picture was
    removed from the campaign page several days later by Facebook due to
    complaints from Islamist elements, who described it as “offensive.” In
    addition, the Facebook page of campaign initiator Diala Haidar, who
    uploaded Bakdounis’ picture to the campaign page, was suspended for 24

    Haidar wrote on her Facebook page that the picture had been removed due
    to complaints by “extremist Islamist women-haters” and slammed Facebook
    for stifling free speech while “pretending to support it.”

    They will need our support.
    Make certain this goes viral.

  2. I do sympathize with them, they are in for a very long struggle and I wish them all the good luck in the world. For the last few years their Iranian sisters have been publishing a web to fight for their rights (goggle Change for Equality). They want to collect a million signatures to pressure their Government. It’s amazing the number of them who end up in prison.

  3. It is time for all women to be truly free – they already are equal, the patriarchal dinosaurs just need to catch up. Good luck to the brave Arab women.

  4. They can but dream. At the Rio 2012 summit a global law was proposed which would have given women that most  precious of rights: the right to govern what happens in between their own legs.

    It was vetoed by every last one of the bearded sand nations.

    And women do not have equality. Just look at the latest figures with regards to equal pay.

  5. It took quite a few years and two world wars for women to get something like equal rights in Europe. In the end, at least in Holland, men still outnumber women in a lot of positions but it’s clear that they are catching up. I travel by train a lot and then number of female students appears to be bigger than the number of male students. But there is still a lot of work to be done.
    I wish all the Arab women all the luck they need. They have my support. Go girls go!!

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