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This week’s front page editor

Rosemary Bechler

Rosemary Bechler is a mainsite editor at openDemocracy

Constitutional conventions: best practice

La explotación del arte de las mujeres mayas es una historia de racismo, sexismo y capitalismo global

Los cuerpos, el trabajo y el conocimiento de las mujeres mayas han sido explotados durante siglos. Es una vieja historia, ahora con un giro neoliberal. English.

The exploitation of Mayan women’s art is a story of racism, sexism – and global capitalism

Mayan women’s bodies, labour and knowledge have been exploited for centuries. This is an old story, with a neoliberal twist. Español.

Argentina abortion vote divides the nation, from senators to doctors

The senate votes this week on a potentially groundbreaking bill to legalise voluntary abortion. Opponents include some doctors and health facilities.

Arrests of women’s rights activists put Saudi Arabia on the wrong side of history

From Indonesia to Saudi Arabia, Muslim women’s movements for equality are increasingly interconnected – and unstoppable.

This ultra-conservative institute has infiltrated the Polish state, on a relentless quest to ban abortion

Ordo luris is an extreme anti-choice group whose founders were ‘inspired’ by a controversial Catholic fundamentalist network. How has it gained so much political power?

Why is the US government meeting LGBT 'hate groups' and dangling money in front of them?

Anti-abortion and anti-LGBT 'extremists' attended a high-level summit on religious freedom this week, where government officials explained how to access US funding. 

How ‘conscientious objectors’ threaten women’s newly-won abortion rights in Latin America

From Uruguay to Chile, medical staff are refusing to provide abortion services even after their legalisation. Español

Why the Women’s March sees Trump’s UK visit as ‘a glorious opportunity’

Thousands plan to march in London on Friday and also raise awareness of impacts of government policies on vulnerable women in the UK.

How El Salvador’s evangelicals have joined the backlash against women’s reproductive rights

The changing religious landscape in this historically Catholic country has not been good news for women, who live under one of the world’s harshest anti-abortion laws. Español

Italy’s new government is bad news for women and minorities

There will be hard times ahead in Italy, unless you are a heterosexual, cisgendered, white man. The new families minister opposes abortion, immigration and LGBTI rights.

How did Northern Ireland lawmakers carve out an anti-abortion ‘ghetto’ within the UK?

Northern Ireland remains a blind spot for equality for women and members of the LGBTIQ community. Will Ireland’s abortion referendum change this?

The Backlash podcast episode 3: why we need feminist investigative journalism

At the 2018 International Journalism Festival in Perugia, Italy, 50.50 organised a panel on feminist investigative journalism with Rebecca Omonira-Oyekanmi, Crina Boros, and Claudia Torrisi.

'A historic victory for women's rights': how the world responded to Ireland's abortion referendum

Media from the UK to Argentina react to the results of Friday’s vote, laying the path to legislation for safe abortion services for Irish women.

MPs criticise Facebook’s “not fit for purpose” foreign ad ban as Ireland votes on abortion

British and Irish parliamentarians call for major changes to unregulated social media campaigning following openDemocracy revelations – but too late for Friday’s historic vote.

Six ways Ireland’s abortion referendum could be hacked this week

Anti-abortion money, Facebook ads and boots-on-the-ground volunteers have piled in from across the world to try and swing Friday’s historic vote. Will they succeed?

‘Nice Irish girls don’t have sex’ is the old idea at the heart of historic abortion rights battle

Even if abortion is legalised in Ireland, this mindset must be challenged if women are to fully access their reproductive rights.

Who benefits from sensationalised media coverage of abortion? Hint: not women, whose lives are at stake

Media outlets too often cover abortion-related news in inaccurate and derogatory ways. Activists and progressive journalists must work together to change this.

How Irish anti-abortion activists are drawing on Brexit and Trump campaigns to influence referendum

Backlash against Irish abortion rights enlists some of the same technologies, companies, and individuals involved in controversial Trump and Brexit campaigns.

Young, trans Nigerians: ‘people need to see that we exist’

It may become harder for church and state to deny that trans Nigerians exist, thanks to activists like Miss saHHara.

Foreign and 'alt-right' activists target Irish voters on Facebook ahead of abortion referendum

New data shows how social media has become a battleground in a transatlantic backlash against abortion rights for Irish women.

Feminist bots vs right-wing trolls: Brazil’s gender justice movements cross new frontiers

Abortion has long been criminalised in Brazil. It is an issue that many have all but given up on – except for feminist movements.

The Backlash podcast episode 2: "you can't eat a condom"

Anti-choice activists at the United Nations argue that rural women need food, not reproductive choice. But unsafe abortions kill women.

Teen Mom Tanzania: denied sex education, then criminalised for pregnancy

Pregnant teenagers face expulsion from school, arrests, even death. The backlash against sex education in Africa is punishing our girls, and must end now.

How the UN women’s talks failed to call out corporate power – letting down our human rights defenders

Last month’s Commission on the Status of Women talks failed to tackle corporate impunity, despite increasingly recognised risks to women human rights defenders.

‘She could have been our Martin Luther King Jr’ – tribute to Marielle Franco

The city councilwoman advocated for the rights of the most oppressed Brazilians. This is why people around the world are mourning and protesting her death. Español

DRC mining industry is a prime example of how corporate power threatens women’s rights

This is why feminist activists are mobilising behind a proposed international treaty to regulate the impacts of transnational corporations.

Video: feminist activists speak out against corporate impunity

Human rights abuses. Plundered resources. #Feminists4BindingTreaty explain why corporations must be held accountable for their impacts around the world.

Will reactionary delegations torpedo UN talks on rural women?

At the Commission on the Status of Women, commitments to rural women’s empowerment are under threat. Can new, progressive alliances block advances by reactionary delegations?

‘We won’t give up’: 25 years of feminist resistance to the war on women’s bodies in Poland

In 1993, the Polish government took away our right to abortion – starting a war on women’s bodies which continues to this day.

A tribute to the fearless Laura Lee: freedom fighter for sex workers’ rights, and my friend

Laura Lee died on 7 February 2018. She was a leading activist who campaigned fearlessly for the decriminalisation of sex work in the UK.

How the global women's movement shaped the UN international development agenda

Amid conservative backlash against women’s rights, how did feminist advocates ensure that the sustainable development goals focused on gender equality?

Apply for a 50.50 women’s rights and corporate power reporting fellowship

We need your help to investigate women’s rights and corporate power around the world. Apply for a 50.50 reporting fellowship.

Violence against women at Sudan’s universities has been tolerated for far too long

Western agencies have focused on female genital mutilation in Sudan, but this isn't the only women’s rights battle that needs support in our country.

Can Sierra Leone’s female secret societies be allies in the fight against female genital mutilation?

FGM is a deeply-rooted and widespread practice in the country. Can its locally-powerful practitioners help curtail it?

Activist Reham Al-Bader’s death in Yemen shows the dangers women face providing lifelines in conflict

Women in Yemen are challenging the death and destruction around them, often paying a heavy price. Yet, their voices and skills are still sidelined.

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