Journalists in Iran Charged for Reporting Mahsa Amini’s Death
Two Iranian journalists, Niloufar Hamedi and Elaheh Mohammadi, have been charged with “conspiring with foreign intelligence agencies to undermine national security” for their reporting on the death of Mahsa Amini last year. Both women had been held for eight months before facing trial last month. According to reports, families were not allowed to attend, and lawyers were not allowed to speak in their defense. Hamedi became involved in Mahsa Amini’s case after speaking with her relatives at the hospital and publicizing her death across social media. Days after this visit, her Twitter account was suspended, and she was placed in solitary confinement in Tehran’s Evin prison. Separately, Mohammadi had traveled to report on Amini’s funeral before also being imprisoned in Evin. “These two journalists have become icons of professional journalism in Iran in the face of all the restrictions and the censorship,” said Asal, a former reporter for the daily newspaper Shargh, which Hamedi worked for. “Their imprisonment is not just the imprisonment of two journalists, but the imprisonment of professional journalism in Iran.” According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, at least ninety-five journalists have been arrested since Amini’s death.
Women Abandoned After Marriage in India
A recent New York Times publication illustrates the troubling pattern of husbands abandoning their spouses after marriage in the Indian state of Punjab. With promises of a more prosperous life, many women marry men who work abroad, hoping to receive a visa and later join them. Some of the marriages are legitimate, with husbands committed to securing a visa for their wives. But many other women are being deceived, with their families defrauded of dowries, honeymoon expenses, and visa payments. In many cases, the husband leaves after the wedding to work abroad with no intention of having his spouse join him. Wives are left behind with in-laws, many in a state of permanent servitude. Many women report constant surveillance, which leads to psychological and physical abuse, including rape. Women have been filing petitions with India’s Supreme Court and reporting their husbands to authorities in hopes of having their passports revoked. But many are afraid or unable to file complaints due to cultural and financial reasons.
Brazil Combats Wage Inequality
In early June, Brazil’s Congress approved a bill that will punish companies that do not pay women an equal amount to their male colleagues. In Brazil’s lower house, the Chamber of Deputies, the bill was approved by 325 votes to 36 with those against the bill aligned with former president Jair Bolsonaro. The proposal will now be validated by President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. Once enacted, employers who fail to comply can be fined up to ten times the amount of the highest salary paid at the company. If the company continues to underpay, the fine can be doubled. It is estimated that Brazilian women earn, on average, 78 percent of a man’s salary. A study by the International Labor Organization points out that equal pay between men and women can add 0.2% to the growth rate of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of a country. “We are working hard to make this happen in Brazil,” said the Minister of Women, Cida Gonçalves.