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Report revealing impacts of failed COVID-19 responses on women in the MENA region set for release

A groundbreaking new report revealing the extensive impacts of failed government and international responses to COVID-19 on women and the feminist peace agenda in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region is scheduled for release on Wednesday, 28 October.

Developed by the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF), the report examines the structural oversights and failures of governments across the MENA region to address the disproportionate impact of the pandemic on women and feminist organisations. It also provides an analysis of the root causes of pre-existing challenges in MENA countries that have been exacerbated by COVID-19.

Highlighting the voices of women activists working in Egypt, Iraq (including Kurdistan Region of Iraq), Lebanon, Palestine, Libya, Syria, and Yemen, the report’s findings include:
● Feminist and gender-related issues in MENA countries are being sidelined while key issues impacting women – such as domestic violence and economic vulnerability – are being exacerbated.
● Highly securitised responses to the pandemic and limited access to technology are forcing spaces for feminist discourse and community organising to shrink or disappear.
● Donor funding for feminist causes in the MENA region is diminishing due to shifting donor priorities and the global economic crisis.

The report also offers a series of recommendations to stabilise and advance the progress of feminist organisations in the MENA region.

COVID-19 and Gender Justice: Feminists in MENA Defying Global Structural Failure will be officially released at a free virtual event taking place on Wednesday, 28 October. All are welcome to attend.

Report release event details:
Date: 28 October 2020
Time: 14:00–15:30 CET | 15:00–16:30 Beirut time | 9:00 – 10:30 EDT
Place: Via Zoom and live streamed on Facebook
Language: English and Arabic