Laura Bates: witch hunts never stopped – now they’re online

The Guardian


The lurid accusations and arbitrary punishments meted out in centuries long gone are all too reminiscent of the way young women are harassed and blamed today

1678 engraving of the public hanging of witches in Scotland.
Disobedient bodies … a 1678 engraving of the public hanging of witches in Scotland. Photograph: The Granger Collection/Alamy
Laura Bates

Laura Bates Thu 28 Feb 2019

If you were tried for witchcraft in early modern Scotland, one of the surest ways to be convicted was to confess. Of course, you didn’t need to confess to be convicted, and confession wasn’t always voluntary. This problem led to a practice called “waking the witch”: a form of torture that involved depriving the accused of sleep for days on end, until they were so exhausted they would hallucinate and babble incoherently. These “ravings” would often later be used as evidence of guilt.

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Religion: why faith is becoming more and more popular

Many find it hard to believe that religious doctrine has always ruled the world.

The editorial staff of

David – non-governmental human rights organization

The Briefing: religion
Composite: The Guardian DesignTeam

THE GUARDIAN, Mon 27 Aug 2018

by Harriet Sherwood

Faith is on the rise and 84% of the global population identifies with a religious group. What does it mean for the future?

How many believers are there around the world?

If you think religion belongs to the past and we live in a new age of reason, you need to check out the facts: 84% of the world’s population identifies with a religious group. Members of this demographic are generally younger and produce more children than those who have no religious affiliation, so the world is getting more religious, not less – although there are significant geographical variations.

According to 2015 figures, Christians form the biggest religious group by some margin, with 2.3 billion adherents or 31.2% of the total world population of 7.3 billion. Next come Muslims (1.8 billion, or 24.1%), Hindus (1.1 billion, or 15.1%) and Buddhists (500 million, or 6.9%).

The next category is people who practise folk or traditional religions; there are 400m of them, or 6% of the global total. Adherents of lesser-practised religions, including Sikhism, Baha’i and Jainism, add up to 58m, or well below 1%. There are 14m Jews in the world, about 0.2% of the global population, concentrated in the US and Israel.

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Protests and celebrations take place worldwide ahead of International Women’s Day

EURONEWS

By Katy Dartford with AP, AFP, EBU  •  Updated: 07/03/2021

Protests and celebrations take place worldwide ahead of International Women’s Day

French women’s rights activists gathered in Paris on Sunday to protest against sexism and sexual violence ahead of International Women’s Day on March 8.

Women’s groups have also called for a “feminist strike” on Monday to advocate for more equality and women’s rights in all parts of life.

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Women’s day: Mexico barrier turned into women’s memorial

BBC / NEWS

A woman stands next to placards with names of women victims of violence as preparations to the Women"s International Day in Mexico City, Mexico, 07 March 2021
Women’s groups have turned the metal fencing into an impromptu memorial for the victims of femicides

Fencing erected to protect Mexico’s National Palace ahead of a planned march to mark International Women’s Day has been turned into a memorial.

The names of hundreds of victims of femicides – murders of women because of their gender – have been painted on the metal fencing.

The three-metre-high (9.8ft) barrier was put up to protect the palace “from vandalism”, the government said.

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Bosnian Anti-Fascists Rally Against Controversial WWII Church Service

Balkan Transitional Justice

Nedim Derisbegovic / May 16, 2020

Some 5,000 people joined an anti-fascist march in Sarajevo in protest against a Catholic mass to commemorate the killings of Croatian Nazi-allied troops and civilians by the Yugoslav Partisans at the end of World War II.

Police said 5,000 people attended an anti-fascist march in central Sarajevo on Saturday against the holding of a Catholic mass which opponents claim glorifies people involved in crimes committed by Croatia’s WWII-era Nazi-allied Ustasa regime.

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‘Women’s rights are being trampled’

Voices from a protest march in Warsaw over Poland’s near-total abortion ban

By Kuba Kaminski, Antonia Mortensen and Laura Smith-Spark, CNN

January 31, 2021

Editor’s note: The people photographed and interviewed by CNN did so on the condition that they are only identified by their first names to preserve their anonymity.Warsaw, Poland — The protesters who marched through the Polish capital’s icy streets on Friday night had a clear message for the government over its imposition this week of a near-total ban on abortions: We will stand up for women’s rights.It was the third day of protests since the ruling came into effect — and marked 100 days of protests since Poland’s constitutional tribunal court first handed down its controversial ruling, sparking weeks of mass demonstrations.Following those protests, the government had signaled it was open to dialogue. But on Wednesday it unexpectedly published the law enforcing the court’s ruling, which states that abortions may only be permitted in cases of rape, incest or when the woman’s life is in danger and bars the termination of pregnancies with fetal defects.

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AN OPEN LETTER

An open letter with a question to international and domestic institutions whose fight and care for human rights are  the grounds for their existence and work:  

“Since when are morals, ethics and justice, on which the fight for inalienable human rights, especially childrenˈs,  is based, not important to you?”

Why have you turned a deaf ear to the Lawsuit and kept your mouths shut although  the three most recent Popes admitted to almost all the crimes committed by the  Roman Catholic Church?!

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Croatia hit by 6.4 magnitude earthquake, leaving at least 7 dead

By Jan Bantic, Arnaud Siad and Nada Bashir, CNN

Updated 0142 GMT (0942 HKT) December 30, 2020

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/12/29/europe/croatia-earthquake-6-3-magnitude-petrinja-intl/index.html

NOW PLAYINGFootage shows aftermath of powerful earthquake in CroatiaCNN00:13/01:12

Source: CNNFootage shows aftermath of powerful earthquake in Croatia 01:12

Zagreb, Croatia (CNN)At least seven people were killed and dozens were injured after a powerful 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck central Croatia on Tuesday, according to the US Geological Survey and Croatian officials.Emergency crews, assisted by the military, were still digging through the rubble in several towns as night fell and electricity remained out.The quake, which struck just after noon local time about 30 miles southeast of the capital Zagreb, could be felt across the Balkans. It is the largest quake to hit Croatia this year, according to the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre.A building destroyed in the earthquake in Petrinja.A building destroyed in the earthquake in Petrinja.Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said the death toll was expected to rise. And he appealed to private citizens not to go to the worst-hit town, Petrinja, which was near the epicenter.”At this moment, we don’t know exactly how many people have died. The latest information before the core cabinet meeting was seven people,” Plenkovic said. “We have some indication that this number may be higher, so we’ll wait and see for the police’s official report.”A girl in the town of Petrinja, a man found inside a collapsed church in the village of Žažina, and five men in the village of Majske Poljane, were among the dead, according to Croatia’s Interior Ministry and local media reports.”We are doing everything we can to help the citizens of Petrinja and surrounding areas in this dramatic and tragic situation,” Interior Minister Davor Bozinovic said in a tweet.”The destructive earthquake has taken human lives, destroyed homes, and we deeply sympathise with every person and every family that has been harmed.”

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Instead of feast day and New Year’s greetings

Let’s become aware of them and let’s come closer to them at least for a moment; them who are deprived of their rights, distrained upon, discriminated against, also the so-called different, victims of extremism, aggression, unscrupulousness, intolerance, the so-called coloured, poor, homeless, refugees, hungry, displaced and victims of falsified religious teachings, children and women victims of religious and other types of violence – exploited children and women who live in captivity – as slaves, ill people suffering pain in any degree of intensity!

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