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Pakistani Rape Victim Gets Honor in U.S.

     What is FAITH?   

    by  DINO HAZELL, Associated Press Writer         Thu Nov 3,  2005  

NEW YORK - A Pakistani activist who was gang-raped at the orders of a tribal council was honored by Glamour Magazine as Woman of the Year for her fight against oppression in her homeland. Mukhtar Mai braved social stigma by going public with her 2002 assault, and used the international attention she attracted to set up a girls school in her rural community.

This award is a victory for poor women; it's a victory for all women," Mai said at the Wednesday night Lincoln Center ceremony after actress Brooke Shields presented her award.

She said her motto is: "End oppression with education." Mia, 36, said she plans to donate $5,000 of her $20,000 prize to victims of the Oct. 8 earthquake that killed more than 70,000 people in Pakistan. The rest of the money will help her establish schools and a women's crisis center.

Mai already has set up a school for girls. She said she considers schooling equally important for boys, because they must learn that under Islam, and under the law, women have the same rights to be left alone as they do.

Mai was ordered raped in 2002 by a council of elders in Meerwala*, her home village in eastern Punjab province, as punishment for her 13-year-old brother's alleged affair with a woman from a higher caste. Mai and her family say the boy had been sexually assaulted by members of the woman's family.

In Pakistan, using rape to restore a family's honor is commonplace. The victim often kills herself in shame. But Mai's outcry drew international attention and landed her alleged attackers in the national courts of Pakistan. A trial court in 2002 sentenced six men to death and acquitted eight others in Mai's rape. In March, the High Court in Punjab province acquitted five of the men and reduced the death sentence of the sixth to life in prison.

After an emotional appeal by Mai, the acquittals were overturned in June and the 13 men who had been released were arrested again. They remain in jail while Pakistan's Supreme Court considers the case.

* There were no telephones or police in ; the the police station in Jatoi is 13 km to the south over dirt roads (Wikipedia)

Past winners of the Woman of the Year award
include U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., and
former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.


[The above article and these comments posted on Yahoo by Shah N. Khan, Date: Sat Nov 5, 2005]:
 It is indeed a good gesture by Americans to honor Mukhtaran [sic].  It is going to encourage those women all over the world who are raped but do not report the crime.

"It is little wonder that rape is one of the least-reported crimes. Perhaps it is the only crime in which the victim becomes the accused and, in reality, it is she who must prove her good reputation, her mental soundness, and her impeccable propriety."

In the United States, 1.3 women are raped every minute. That results in 78 rapes each hour, 1872 rapes each day, 56160 rapes each month and 683,280 rapes each year. 1 out of every 3 American women will be sexually assaulted in her lifetime. The United States has the world's highest rape rate of the countries that publish such statistics. It's 4 times higher than Germany, 13 times higher than England, and 20 times higher than Japan. 1 in 7 women will be raped by her husband. 83% of rape cases are ages 24 or under. 1 in 4 college women have either been raped or suffered attempted rape. 1 in 12 males students surveyed had committed acts that met the legal definition of rape. Furthermore, 84% of the men who had committed such acts said what they had done was definitely not rape. 75% of male students and 55% of female students involved in acquaintance rape had been drinking or using drugs. Only 16% of rapes are ever reported to the police.

Source Freda Adler, U.S. educator, writes in her book Sisters in Crime, ch. 9 (1975).    http://oak.cats.ohiou.edu/~ad361896/anne/cease/rapestatisticspage.html


At the age of 5, Malika Oufkir, eldest daughter of General Oufkir, was adopted by King Muhammad V of Morocco and sent to live in the palace as part of the royal court. There she led a life of unimaginable privilege and luxury alongside the king's own daughter. King Hassan II ascended the throne following Muhammad V's death, and in 1972 General Oufkir was found guilty of treason after staging a coup against the new regime, and was summarily executed. Immediately afterward, Malika, her mother, and her five siblings were arrested and imprisoned, despite having no prior knowledge of the coup attempt.

They were first held in an abandoned fort, where they ate moderately well and were allowed to keep some of their fine clothing and books. Conditions steadily deteriorated, and the family was eventually transferred to a remote desert prison, where they suffered a decade of solitary confinement, torture, starvation, and the complete absence of sunlight. Oufkir's horrifying descriptions of the conditions are mesmerizing, particularly when contrasted with her earlier life in the royal court, and many graphic images will long haunt readers. Finally, teetering on the edge of madness and aware that they had been left to die, Oufkir and her siblings managed to tunnel out using their bare hands and teaspoons, only to be caught days later. Her account of their final flight to freedom makes for breathtaking reading. Stolen Lives is a remarkable book of unfathomable deprivation and the power of the human will to survive.


CBS News

Pervez Musharraf