Despite a rise in the awareness of women’s rights in Georgia, feminist activists have found themselves up against a deeply-rooted culture that hinders further progress. Early marriages, a lack of recognition of the need for more female decision-makers, and impassivity towards women’s issues in the male-dominated parliament create a compounding, socially-driven force that stands on the way of gender equality.
‘A woman should know her place. A woman should show love to us all. A woman is property, and she belongs to a man. If a woman walks around naked, or if she does not behave properly, she answers to her husband, her father, and her brother. According to our customs, if a woman goes out too freely, her relatives will kill her… That’s how it happens. A brother kills his sister, a husband kills his wife… But as President, I cannot allow them to be killed. So, women shouldn’t wear shorts.’ [Read more…]
Faced with bullying, discrimination, and violence queer people in the South Caucasus are frequently forced to flee their homes. [Read more…]
Spousal rape and sexual violence affects many women in Armenia, and cultural taboos and shaming of victims means that women often do not come forward. While changes in the law were supposed to counter this, many activists say the problem of sexual violence remains dire, and the women affected are still left with little protection. [Read more…]
Women across the South Caucasus share many of the same experiences; from Baku to Yerevan to Tbilisi, and in the smaller settlements in between, women learn from a young age to be wary of men. Inappropriate comments and propositions from strangers, groping, and worse are something women in the Caucasus are often forced to contend with, and while the problems seem universal, protections under the law are also universally lacking. [Read more…]
There is no law on domestic violence in Abkhazia — everything that happens within the confines of the home is considered private. But NGOs and charities working with battered women are fighting back, arguing that a such a law is crucial for protecting women.
Increased rates of divorce have become a topic of a public debate in Azerbaijan. Many see the reason in a changing place of women in society.
In the Yazidi villages in the west of Armenia, many girls and boys don’t finish school. For girls, it’s ‘a great tragedy’ to be unwed by 18, while the boys must go to work. But there are some in the community challenging the stereotypes, hoping to build a better world for future generations.
Lured abroad with promises of love or money, victims of human trafficking from Armenia often find themselves forced into prostitution in Turkey and Dubai. For those who escape, the psychological scars of their ordeals are added to by a lack of acceptance and understanding from family and society back in Armenia. [Read more…]
Despite reports of violence and discrimination against queer people often hitting the news, for Wagdy (Egypt), Riri (Azerbaijan), and Misha (Nigeria), Georgia represents a safe place where they can finally be themselves. While some find a new life in Georgia free from fear, the country’s opaque asylum procedures threaten to send some of them back, their presence deemed ‘contradictory to the interests of the country’.