Wednesday, 7 December 2011

2011 : Frapper les femmes au volant en Saoudie

Sur le Figaro : 

Les saoudiennes prennent le volant de la révolte

Par Delphine Minoui le 16 juin 2011 22h29 

Attention, femmes au volant ! Lancée sur facebook, la campagne Women2drive appelle les Saoudiennes à conduire, ce vendredi 17 mai, « jusqu'à la publication d'un décret royal autorisant les femmes à conduire ». La fronde des femmes du royaume, interdites de conduite, remonte au mois dernier.
Une informaticienneManal al-Charif est alors la première à braver l'interdit en postant sur YouTube une vidéo la montrant au volant (voir ci-dessus). Sacrilège ! La jeune femme est arrêtée, puis finalement libérée le 30 mai.
Mais ses mésaventures n'ont pas entamé la détermination de ses consoeurs. Au contraire : les voilà qui réitèrent, en arguant qu'aucune loi ne leur proscrit le volant, à l'exception d'une fatwa promulguée dans le Royaume dont les lois s'inspirent d'une version rigoriste de l'islam. Un parcours du combattant pourtant semé d'embûches. En guise de contre-offensive, des hommes ont déjà lancé la « campagne du Iqal », le cordon retenant le couvre-chef traditionnel. Demain, préviennent-ils, ils seront postés sur la route pour frapper les femmes qu'ils verront conduire.

Campagne Facebook Women2drive : 

Manal al-Sharif

Au sujet de 
Manal al-Sharif 

Manal al-Sharif is a women's rights activist from Saudi Arabia who helped start a women's right to drive campaign in 2011. A women's rights activist who had previously filmed herself driving, Wajeha al-Huwaider, filmed al-Sharif driving a car[6] as part of the campaign. The video was posted on YouTube andFacebook.[4][5] Al-Sharif was detained and released on 21 May[7] and rearrested the following day.[2] On 30 May, al-Sharif was released on bail,[8] on the conditions of returning for questioning if requested, not driving and not talking to the media.[9] The New York Times and Associated Press associated the women's driving campaign with the wider pattern of Arab world protests and the long duration of al-Sharif's detention with Saudi authorities' fear of protests.[10][11]

2011 women driving campaign

In 2011, a group of women including Manal al-Sharif started a Facebook campaign named "Teach me how to drive so I can protect myself"[4] or Women2Drive[5][2] that says that women should be allowed to drive. The campaign calls for women to start driving from 17 June 2011.[5] As of 21 May 2011, about 12,000 readers of the Facebook page had expressed their support.[4] Al-Sharif describes the action as acting within women's rights, and "not protesting".[2] Wajeha al-Huwaider was impressed by the campaign and decided to help.[6]
In late May, Al-Sharif drove her car in Khobar with al-Huwaider filming.[6] The video was posted to YouTube and Facebook. In the video, al-Sharif stated, "This is a volunteer campaign to help the girls of this country [learn to drive]. At least for times of emergency, God forbid. What if whoever is driving them gets a heart attack?" She was detained by the religious police (CPVPV) on 21 May and released after six hours.[7][4] As of 23 May 2011, about 600,000 people had watched the video.[7]
The YouTube video of al-Sharif's drive became inaccessible at its original location, the Facebook page for the campaign was deleted, and the Twitteraccount used by al-Sharif was "copied and altered". Supporters republished the original video and Facebook page and a summary of al-Sharif's five recommended rules for the 17 June campaign were published on a blog and by the New York Times.[18][19]
On 22 May, al-Sharif was detained again[7][5] and the Director General of Traffic Administration, Major-General Suleiman Al-Ajlan, was questioned by journalists regarding traffic regulations related to women driving. Al-Ajlan stated that the journalists should "put the question" to members of theConsultative Assembly of Saudi Arabia.[20] RTBF suggested that al-Sharif had been sentenced to five days' imprisonment.[2]
The New York Times described al-Sharif's campaign as a "budding protest movement" that the Saudi government tried to "swiftly extinguish".[10]Associated Press said that Saudi authorities "cracked down harder than usual on al-Sharif, after seeing her case become a rallying call for youths anxious for change" in the context of the 2010–2011 Middle East and North Africa protests.[11] Both news organisations attributed the long duration of al-Sharif's detention with Saudi authorities' fear of a wider protest movement in Saudi Arabia.[10][11]
On 23 May, another woman was detained for driving a car. She drove with two women passengers in Ar Rass and was detained by traffic police in the presence of the CPVPV. She was released after signing a statement that she would not drive again.[21] In reaction to al-Sharif's arrest, several more Saudi women published videos of themselves driving during the following days.[11]
On 24 May, Amnesty International declared al-Sharif to be a prisoner of conscience and called for her immediate and unconditional release.[12] On 26 May, authorities said that al-Sharif would remain in detention until 5 June 2011, according to lawyer Waleed Aboul Khair.[11] Al-Sharif was conditionally freed on 30 May. Her lawyer Adnan al-Saleh said that she was charged with "inciting women to drive" and "rallying public opinion". As of 31 May 2011, it is unknown whether or not the charges were dropped.[9] The conditions of Al-Sharif's release include bail,[8] returning for questioning if requested, not driving and not talking to the media.[9] As possible reasons for al-Sharif's early release, The National cited al-Sharif having written a letter to King Abdullah, 4,500 Saudis signing an online petition to the King, and "an outpouring of indignation and disbelief by both Saudis and critics abroad that Ms al-Sharif was jailed for something that is not a moral or criminal offence."[9]

[edit]2011 women prisoners campaign

Following her 30 May release from prison, al-Sharif started a Twitter campaign called "Faraj" to release Saudi, Filipino and Indonesian women prisoners in the Dammam women's prison who "are locked up just because they owe a small sum of money but cannot afford to pay the debt".[22] Al-Sharif said that the women prisoners were mostly domestic workers who remained in prison after completing their prison terms, because they could not pay their debts and because their former Saudi employers did not help to release them or fund their flights to return to their countries of origin. She referred to 22 Indonesian women and named four women needing help and stated the amount of their debts. She called for donations to be made directly to the director of the Dammam women's prison in order to reimburse the women's debts and free them.[23]

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