News & Current Affairs

Women This Week: Around The World in 5

By Hillary Essien | Jun 4, 2023

This ongoing series highlights women's news and information about foreign policy around women. This week’s post covers May 27 to June 3.


This week, a new sexual and reproductive health law went into force on Thursday, guaranteeing women the right to take time off work during their periods.

The progressive government proposed the "Gender Equality Bill" in February, and parliament ratified it with some revisions since then.

Read more here.



This week, the iconic Ama Ata Aidoo, one of Africa's most renowned novelists and playwrights, passed away at the age of 81.

Her family gave a statement saying that the "beloved relative and writer" had passed away after a brief illness. Aidoo's works like The Dilemma of a Ghost, Our Sister Killjoy, and Changes, portrayed and honoured the lives of African women.

Read more here


South Korea

Hang Hye-young, a member of the progressive minority Justice Party, is urging South Korea's National Assembly to implement free sanitary products for young Korean women. 

Hye-young is proposing a revision to the Youth Welfare Support Act to provide free access to menstrual products for women between  9 and 24 years old.

Sanitary pads sold in S. Korea are nearly 40 per cent more expensive than the global average, according to data revealed by the Korean Women's Environmental Network on Thursday.

Read more here.

Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia has charged Manahel al-Otaibi, a women’s rights activist and fitness instructor who has been in detention since November 2022.

Prosecutors have accused al-Otaibi of “defaming the kingdom at home and abroad, calling for rebellion against public order and society’s traditions and customs, and challenging the judiciary and its justice," though she was originally arrested for social media posts that challenged the country’s male guardianship laws and the requirement for women to wear a body-shrouding abaya. 

Read more here.


United States of America

This week, the White House released its first-ever U.S. National Action Plan to End Gender-Based (GBV) Violence, focused on preventing and addressing sexual violence, intimate partner violence, stalking, and other forms of GBV.


In 2021, President Biden signed an executive order establishing the White House Gender Policy Council and called on the council to develop a national strategy on gender equity and equality, including the commitment to ending gender-based violence both domestically and globally.


Read more here


HIDDEN - to trigger update. rm later