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U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron has reportedly started the process that will let the possible first-born daughter of Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, to accede to the throne, reported Time on Oct. 14.

"We espouse gender equality in all other aspects of life and it is an anomaly that in the rules relating to the highest public officer we continue to enshrine male superiority," Cameron wrote in a letter to the prime ministers of the Commonwealth countries.

More News to Cheer This Week:

  • On Oct. 13 women’s rights activists held a march in Kabul to support Afghan lawmaker Semin Barekzai, reported Pakistan’s Daily Times Oct. 14. Barekzai was on her 12th consecutive day of the hunger strike, over election fraud and to protest against her disqualification from parliament. On Oct. 12, an Afghan member of parliament and four students also joined Barekzai.
  • The women of the Colombian town of Barbacoas have declared their sex strike over, ABC News reported Oct. 12. The strike was to demand the construction of a road to link the town of to the provincial capital of Pasto. Army engineers began work Oct. 11.
  • On Oct. 11 PBS television launcheda five-part series Women, War & Peace, featuring the stories of women in conflict zones from Bosnia to Afghanistan and Colombia to Liberia.
  • Israel plans to release all Palestinian female prisoners, a Palestinian official announced after Israel and Hamas reached a swap deal, Israel-based Ynetnews.com reported Oct. 11.
  • In Cuttack, India, over 200 Muslim women gathered on Oct. 13 to protest rights denied to divorced Muslim women, reported The Times of India Oct. 14.


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Forty-seven percent of girls ages 11-17 watch reality TV regularly and perceive it to be an accurate depiction of real life, according to a report released by Girl Scouts of America Oct. 13, the group said in a press release. In fact, girls who regularly view reality TV accept and expect a higher level of drama, aggression and bullying in their own lives, and measure their worth primarily by their physical appearance, according to the research entitled "Real to Me: Girls and Reality TV."

Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana, the largest council in the nation, is calling on female teens ages 13-17 to share the "real" realities of their lives on video in an interactive video campaign called Reality Check.

More News to Jeer This Week:

  • An Indian official said that economic growth does not necessarily translate into gender equality in the country, reported The Economic Times Oct. 13. The minister expressed concerns over the excess female and infant mortality rates in several states.
  • Republican presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul will air a new ad focused on his socially conservative stances, in particular his strong views opposing abortion, reported CBS Oct. 14.
  • The French public prosecutor’s office will not pursue a French writer’s complaint of attempted rape against former International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn due to lack of evidence, reported Reuters on Oct. 13.
  • More that 60 percent of isolated rural women were victims of four or more domestic-violence incidents in the past year, compared with 39.3 percent of urban women, The Daily Iowan reported Oct. 12.
  • The City Council of Topeka, Kan., repealed the local law that makes domestic violence a crime aiming to cut its budget, The New York Times reported Oct. 11.
  • In Iraq, domestic abuse against women has increased during the years of war and economic hardship since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion, Iraqi experts said, Boston.com reported Oct. 11. The World Health Organization has estimated that 1-in-5 Iraqi women has reported being a victim of domestic violence, and experts say the rate is much higher.
  • An Iranian actress, Marzieh Vafamehr, has been sentenced to a year in prison and 90 lashes for appearing in an Australian film production, CBC News reported Oct. 11. No official statement from the government has been issued yet on the sentence.
  • Forty women were wounded in the Yemeni city of Taez when regime supporters attacked an all-female street celebration of the Nobel Peace Prize win of Tawakkul Karman, reported South Africa’s News24 on Oct. 10, quoting the AFP.


  • There are big differences in how people of color and the country’s white majority relate to Social Security, according to an Oct. 13 press statement from the Commission to Modernize Social Security. The commission is made up of national policy experts representing African American, Asian American, Latino and Native American communities.
  • Contrary to widespread assumptions, career women do ask for advancement and better pay, the Catalyst research group on businesswomen said in an Oct. 13 press release.
  • Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, 2011 Nobel Laureate, led in unofficial results released Oct. 12 in Liberia’s presidential election, but the early tally indicates she didn’t receive the 50 percent needed to avoid a runoff, Forbes reported Oct. 12.
  • A British Supreme Court ruled that a blanket Home Office visa ban on British citizens under 21 bringing spouses to the U.K. from abroad was unlawful, saying it had done more harm than good and had prevented 5,000 genuine couples a year, aged 18 to 21, from living together in Britain, reported The Guardian Oct. 12.
  • Yulia V. Tymoshenko, former prime minister of Ukraine, was sentenced to seven years in prison on Oct. 11, The New York Times reported. Prosecutors said Tymoshenko had harmed Ukraine’s interests when, as prime minister, when she carried out negotiations with Russia in 2009 over the price of natural gas.
  • Policy makers in 36 states this year proposed drug testing for people receiving benefits like welfare, unemployment assistance, job training, food stamps and public housing, The New York Times reported Oct. 11.


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