‘Women being targeted in world’s conflict flashpoints,’ says former minister
search

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here
News

‘Women being targeted in world’s conflict flashpoints,’ says former minister

Jewish-Muslim virtual conference hears politicans on both sides talk of the need for unity amid Afghan, Ukraine and Uyghur crises

Anna Hussain, Lindy Diamond, Ahmereen Reza and Laura Marks of Nisa-Nashim prepare for conference with homemade samosas. Photo: Yakir Zur
Anna Hussain, Lindy Diamond, Ahmereen Reza and Laura Marks of Nisa-Nashim prepare for conference with homemade samosas. Photo: Yakir Zur

A former government minister has expressed her horror that women are being targeted in global conflicts, at a summit for Jewish and Muslim women.

Nusrat Ghani MP told the annual Nisa-Nashim conference “women are the collateral damage” amid the plight of Afghani, Uyghur and now Ukrainian women.

They are all subject to horrific, gender specific persecution, Ms Ghani told more than 100 women at the event, held online with the theme ‘Navigating Crisis’.

Ms Ghani spoke of Daesh, the Chinese Government and Putin’s regime, all of which have targeted her directly, as examples of the greatest threats of today – the rise of tyrannical regimes and the lack of confidence of Western liberal democracies.

Former MP for Stoke and chief executive of Index on Censorship, Ruth Smeeth focussed on the crisis of people without a voice in repressive regimes. She urged the “strong and gobby” Nisa-Nashim women to drive change.

The conference is the largest of its kind in Europe and brings Jewish and Muslim women from all over the UK together to discuss pressing issues including the environment, violence against women, food poverty, grief and the Israel/Palestine conflict.

With tensions running high after the death of journalist Shareen Abu Akleh last week, Sarah Bernstein, chief executive of the Rossing Centre in Jerusalem, urged delegates to talk about the conflict – but not to let it destroy their relationships. Speaking alongside head teacher Hunan Abu-Dalu, she urged the virtual room to support peace through offering everyone support not just one side.

British-born Bernstein called it “profoundly unhelpful” to be anti-Israeli and, equally, encouraged the Jewish community to stop being anti-Palestinian and insecure.

In Nisa-Nashim traditional style, alongside the serious discussions was a chance for participants to laugh, chat and play games as they re-committed to their powerful friendships.

Nisa-Nashim co-founder and acting chief executive Laura Marks OBE said: “The world may be in crisis but one thing we heard again and again at our conference is that we are in this together. Friendship and supporting one another is no longer optional, it is the only way forward.”

Other notable speakers at the event were Department of the Environment permanent secretary Tamara Finkelstein, and Dr Husna Ahmad, chief executive of Global One.

 

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...

Engaging

Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.

Celebrating

There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.

Pioneering

In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.

Campaigning

Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish Newsalso produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more:
comments