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This week’s editor

Alex Sakalis, Editor

Alex Sakalis is associate editor of openDemocracy and co-edits the Can Europe Make It? page.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Christian ‘legal army’ in hundreds of court battles worldwide

Women’s rights advocates say controversial US legal advocacy group Alliance Defending Freedom is ‘exporting extreme ideologies worldwide’ against sexual and reproductive rights.

Five inspirational feminists you should know and honour today

Documenting the lives of departed feminists, and sharing their stories, honours their memories and inspires future generations.

Remembering murdered activists is important – but not enough

My organisation publishes annual, online tributes to activists who have passed away. What we really need is for states to guarantee their safety.

Women’s voices must not be ignored in business and human rights talks

The corporate rush for land and resources in the Global South has gender-specific impacts on women, who are routinely excluded from decision-making.

How India's Café Sheroes fights back against acid attacks

Run by survivors of acid attacks, the café is part of broader campaigns for women’s access to public places and freedom of expression.

Tracking the backlash: why we're investigating the 'anti-rights' opposition

Growing and globalising networks of conservative and fundamentalist groups are pushing back against our sexual and reproductive rights. Help us investigate.

Young feminists: the future belongs to us, not transnational corporations

Corporate impunity impacts young women and girls disproportionately. Young feminists must join the growing mobilisation for a UN treaty on transnational corporations and human rights.

How anti-abortion extremists are exploiting #BlackLivesMatter to vilify African-American women

Fighting anti-choice campaigns requires more than a gendered approach – reproductive justice demands direct anti-racist work too.

We need a new, radical vision of feminist sisterhood

The racism of white feminists, whether overt or covert, contributes to the oppression of women of colour, and holds the movement back.

How to spend €500 million: women’s rights groups on Europe’s UN grant

We welcome this week’s historic funding announcement for work to end violence against women and girls. But there are important caveats.

“We’re not just here to learn – we can lead too”: young women human rights defenders speak out

Young activists from four continents talk about their local struggles and what motivates them.

Feminist movements lead the way in fight against repressive states

Despite pressures from society and states alike, feminist movements are growing around the world. They know how to challenge restrictions in creative and innovative ways.

Show me the money: the fight for funding and accountability for women’s rights

Aid donors, governments and the United Nations have made many commitments to gender equality. Their actions have been less impressive.

“It’s so taboo but we want it so damn bad”: introducing 50.50 columnists Tiffany Mugo and Claudia Torrisi

These 50.50 authors will delight and challenge us with monthly comment and analysis about sexuality in Africa, and reportage on intersecting forms of oppression in Italy.

“Change can start from us”: Roma women in Italy fight for their rights

A new generation of Roma women is rising up against multiple forms of discrimination, to claim their rights to jobs, education, and healthcare.

Reproductive rights on the move: refugee women in Greece struggle to access contraception

Half of female asylum-seekers in Europe are aged 18-34. With little control over their environments, how can they retain control over their bodies?

"They are coming for your children" – the rise of CitizenGo

The right-wing campaigning platform has coordinated mass online petitions – and offline actions. Its reach is growing, alarming human rights advocates. Español

The future of sex in Africa

Stigma and growing religious fundamentalism are preventing women from fully accessing a range of reproductive health services.

Too many Afghan women in London face racism, sexism – and unwanted pregnancies

Recent research on Afghan immigrant women in London has revealed a multi-layered crisis. What can be done to address this, and to empower them?

Abortire in Italia: come l'obiezione di coscienza è diventata una minaccia per i diritti e la salute delle donne

Quasi 40 anni dopo la legalizzazione dell'aborto – tra proteste e movimenti di liberazione culturale – le donne faticano ancora ad accedere ai servizi essenziali. Read this article in English.

Abortion in Italy: how widespread 'conscientious objection' threatens women’s health and rights

Almost 40 years after abortion was legalised – amid mass protests and a broader cultural liberation movement – women still struggle to access crucial services. Leggi questo articolo in italiano.

Re-branding hate?: ultra-conservative organising under a "family-friendly" banner

Diverse groups are joining international “pro-family” alliances. Their common cause? To block and roll back feminist and sexual rights gains.

Violence against women and extremism are intrinsically linked: overlooking this puts rights at risk

Religious groups we work with, in the fight against extremism, must have a commitment to universal rights – as well as peace.

"This is a war": Inside the global "pro-family" movement against abortion and LGBT rights

At a recent summit in Budapest, anti-abortion celebrities and anti-gay rights activists gathered with their political allies waging a ‘spiritual war’ for the ‘traditional family.’

Sexual rights: off-limits for Indian women with disabilities?

Women with disabilities in India face routine violence, coercion and control over their sexual choices that would not be tolerated by non-disabled women.

How do we fight anti-rights fundamentalism at the United Nations?

An extract from the first report of a new initiative tracks how fundamentalist groups have embraced the UN as a site to foster conservative social change.

Poem: For the mamas on the frontlines

"I said, if mamas don’t fight for the children, then who will?" Helen Knott performed her poem at the 2017 Nobel Women's Initiative conference. Catch up on 50.50's coverage.

Fight fundamentalism in all its guises: a call to action from Yemen to Germany

“Be close to people’s dreams, their aspirations and their suffering...fight for a society of equal citizenship” - Nobel Peace laureate Tawakkol Karman. Jennifer Allsopp reports for 50.50 from the third day of the Nobel Women's Initiative conference.

Lessons from farmers and indigenous women: cultivate democracy

Learning to live in harmony with the land is co-constituent to human rights activism. Jennifer Allsopp reports for 50.50 from the second day of the 2017 Nobel Women's Initiative conference. 

What would a world without barriers to feminist solidarity look like?

Citizenship is a duty that transcends borders. Jennifer Allsopp reports for 50.50 from the first day of the 2017 Nobel Women's Initiative conference. 

A feminist revolution demands climate justice

To change everything, it takes everyone, and to fight oppression, we must fight it in all forms, at all times. This article is part of 50.50's coverage of the 2017 Nobel Women's Initiative conference. 

"Visionary and creative resistance": meet the women challenging extractivism – and patriarchy

Environmental degradation is deliberate, violent and patriarchal. From Turkey to Guatemala, women are on the frontlines of resistance.

100 days of Trump — and resistance from grassroots women's groups

The multiplicity of harms can feel overwhelming. But with thoughtful coordination we can support each other to resist this administration's agenda and its global impacts.

Conflict in Syria: stop instrumentalising women’s rights

The international community is not listening to us. It must depoliticise the fight against sexual violence and humanise the countering violent extremism strategy.

What does justice mean for migrant women workers?

Those who want to help migrant women access justice must listen to them, and their concerns and priorities.

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