Public Sexual Harassment (PSH)

Enjoying One Small Victory

Charges have been dropped against an Uzbek woman who beat up two men (30 and 33), who verbally and physically harassed her in the street.

Gulsanam Alijonova, 23, who has trained in the martial arts, had been charged with hooliganism for refusing to accept being abused.

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However, the community, bloggers and public figures rallied behind her saying she should be rewarded for standing-up to her harassers.

Saida Mirziyoyeva, the President’s eldest daughter, condemned the move to prosecute, comparing it with the tolerant attitude the law shows towards men who engage in domestic violence against women.

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By contrast, no charges were laid against the men who initiated the event by using violence, threats, foul language, and insulting her appearance. They were not even questioned by the police, let alone asked to apologize.

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Thus, globally, it is still the case that if a woman defends herself she is at risk of being criminally charged. But, if she cannot protect herself, then she has no legal recourse for the abuse done to her.

In the streets, men are empowered by the Law to engage in abuse, which if done in the home, at work, or in a business setting would be an offense.

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But let us enjoy this one small victory before rallying to make street harassment illegal!

Onwards, my sisters!