Ahead of International Women’s Day this year, three organisations dedicated to improving women’s rights, child rights and the justice system in Iran, will be hosting an event in London to discuss the state of human rights as they relate to women and girls in Iran today. The event will also celebrate International Women’s Day and the work of the late UN Special Rapporteur for Iran, Asma Jahangir.

The International Coalition Against Violence in Iran (ICAVI), Kayhan Life and Persia Educational Foundation are hosting this event, which is free to attend, on Saturday, 3 March 2018 from 3.30pm-7pm, at Fitzroy House.

The event will feature a distinguished group of panelists including Drewery Dyke, Roya Kashefi, and Richard Ratcliffe, along with special messages from UN Special Rapporteur, Dr. Ahmed Shaheed; and Human Rights Professor, Dr. Naz Ghanea-Hercock.

Researching Reform’s editor is also the managing editor for Kayhan Life, one of the organisations hosting the event, and we are humbled to be chairing the conference. Kayhan Life is a media outlet dedicated to news relating to Iran, and will be relaunching soon as a complete digital news service. (For anyone interested in Iranian current affairs, human rights and culture, we will let you know once the new Kayhan Life site goes live).

The Persia Educational Foundation  is dedicated to supporting women and children worldwide through education, including scholarships, awards and resources for children and women of all backgrounds, including 110-million Persian-speakers worldwide.

ICAVI was established to stop the growing violence in Iran. The coalition tries to achieve this aim through educational work; participation in and contribution to the ongoing debates within Iranian civil society on reform of the legal system; and appeals to the international community for support in dealing with the situation in Iran.

A full description of the event is as follows:

“As Iranian women enter a new phase in advancing equal rights, they face fresh attacks by government authorities. Reminiscent of the 8 March 1979 demonstrations at the outset of new compulsory hejab laws, Iranian women have been taking to the streets of Iran to demand their right to choose. The more than three-decade long struggle has seen generations of women and girls contribute to the advancement of a process that is drawing attention to some of the critical challenges facing Iranian society. It puts these challenges in the context of a body of state policies and laws that systematically discriminate against millions of all backgrounds in Iran.

 It also points to the mistreatment of dual citizens, such as British-Iranian Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, and policies that limit women’s role in society, often veiled in incendiary justifications to protect the state’s agenda, dubbed as national interests.

 Women’s strides in Iran are parallel to international efforts attempting to improve living conditions for all, regardless of any characteristics, including gender. A significant figure facilitating these efforts was that of United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Iran, the indefatigable lawyer and women’s rights advocate, Asma Jahangir. Ms. Jahangir’s contributions to the women’s movement and human rights energised both those working at the grassroots level as well as those leading the equality movement in Iranian society.

“We want to highlight the positive impact of changes women are making every day,” said Rouhi Shafii, Founder of ICAVI, “and show the interconnected nature of this process among those inside Iran and those residing outside its borders.”

This public event will take place on Saturday, 3 March 2018 at Fitzroy House. Doors will open at 3:30 pm. The programme is open to registered participants and will begin promptly at 4:00 pm. It will include two panels, a new short documentary film on the women’s movement in Iran, special messages and Q&A followed by refreshments.

The event will be made available to a global audience through Facebook Live, and is accompanied by a Thunderclap Campaign.

To attend, please register through Eventbrite.

If you’d like more details about the event, please contact Tahirih Danesh at info@persia.education

Please do come along if you can, we would love to see you.