Stories written by Amina Barakat

RIGHTS-MOROCCO: Renewed Efforts to End Violence Against Women

The campaign against violence towards women has been the focus of media attention in Morocco recently, in order to press for an end to gross abuses committed by men against women and make victims aware of the need to break the silence which allows it to continue.

MOROCCO: Polls Largely Maintain the Status Quo for Women in Parliament

This month's parliamentary elections in Morocco have seen the number of women legislators decline from 35 to 34 in the 325 member body. With 30 of the female representatives elected under a quota, the results would seem to indicate that women face challenges in making their presence felt in the lower house - even though a proportional representation system is used for polls.

POLITICS-MOROCCO: Quotas Overpowered by Machismo

When Morocco held legislative polls a decade ago, just two women were elected to the lower house of parliament in this North African country. Legal reforms enacted since have ensured that women will fare better when the latest parliamentary ballot gets underway Friday. But for activists, there is still a long way to go in bringing gender parity to the Chamber of Representatives.

RIGHTS-MOROCCO: Childhood Being Stolen

Habiba Hamrouch describes her daughter, Sanaa, as her "revenge" - her blow against the mixture of abuse, tradition and indifference that enables thousands of girls to be exploited as domestic servants in Morocco.

MAURITANIA: Taking the Weight of Tradition Off Women

Excess weight on women has long been considered something to aspire to in Mauritania, where it serves as a symbol of beauty and wealth. But, it appears these views are being called into question as awareness spreads of the health risks they entail for girls who are force fed to make them gain the desired weight.