Friday, April 20, 2012

Lebanese march for secularism

[Originally posted at NOW Lebanon]

In two weeks and two days, the Lebanese Laïque Pride activist group will hold its third annual Seculars March Towards Citizenship, a three-hour procession from Sanayeh to Ain el-Mraisseh calling for “a secular civil state founded on citizenship” and “the abolition of institutional sectarianism”.

As the @LaiquePride account tweeted earlier in the week, their six key demands are as follows:

1. Enacting a unified Civil Code for the Personal Status Law
2. Passing the Law for Protection of Women from Family Violence submitted by KAFA to the Lebanese parliament
3. Abolishing article 522 of the penal law, which drops charges against a rapist if he marries his victim
4. Amending the nationality law for the right of Lebanese women to grant their nationality to their family
5. Passing the Draft Law Prohibiting the Pre-Censorship [of] Cinema and Theatre
6. Withdrawing the Lebanese Internet Regulation Act (LIRA) draft law

I’m aware that some Lebanese think it a rather good thing that, in their country, wives may be legally raped and beaten; marital and inheritance disputes are settled by theologians; films and plays are routinely censored; and a child born to the wrong faith can’t become president.

For those who feel otherwise, however, the march starts at 16:00 at Sanayeh Gardens, May 6th.

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