So extreme are gender inequalities in South Sudan that a young girl is three times more likely to die in pregnancy or childbirth than to reach the eighth grade – the last grade before high school – according to Plan International, one of the oldest and largest children’s development organisations in the world.
“A recurring nightmare for me is I’m trying to tell someone something and they are not listening. I’m yelling at the top of my lungs and it feels like there is a glass wall between us.”
On a bright March morning, a 17-year old tribal girl woke as usual, and went to catch fish in the village river in the Chirang district of India’s northeastern Assam state.
Twenty-one-year-old Aisha clings to her two children as she recounts her tale of horror. Growing up in the Somali capital Mogadishu, she fell in love and bore a child out of wedlock four years ago. When her family threatened her life for destroying her ‘honour’, Aisha escaped.
As gender-based violence across India becomes more frequent, and more savage, increasing numbers of women are speaking out against the cruelty.