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Albany, NY – As the US sends another 30 thousand US soldiers to Afghanistan, there's a human rights issue that some activists say must be part of the goal: the improved treatment of women.
As many as 80 percent of Afghanistan's marriages are forced, and over half of all brides are under age sixteen. Nearly 90 percent of Afghan women say they have experienced physical, sexual, or psychological violence or forced marriage in their lifetime. Still, there have been some advances that were documented in a recent Human Rights Watch report. Washington correspondent Laura Iiyama has more:
8:09 Afghan Iiyama
Sakeena Yacoobi is an Afghan hero. She was one of five children, but her mother actually had sixteen pregnancies. And young Sakeena decided that studying and finding a way to improve life for women and children in her country was going to be her goal. She studied in the United States, the first person in her family to get an advanced degree and then, she decided to go back. Twenty years later, her Afghan Institute of Learning, which began as an underground effort to offer education to women and created four health clinics, now serves 350 thousand women and children a month. I spoke with Dr. Yacoobi when she was in New York at a women's leadership conference.
6:02 Sakeena Yacoobi Barnett
Dr. Sakeena Yacoobi is founder and head of the Afghan Institute of Learning. To find out more, go to afghaninstituteoflearning.org.
And finally, let's go to the roller derby. It's a sport with a passionate, if small, following, and like most small businesses, the people involved wear many hats. Jackie ZOOjeego profiles Amy Martin - whose life revolves around that circular track.
6:00 Roller Derby PRX