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San Diego, California: Brutal Gang Rape Of Teenage Girl In Brazil Causes Outrage
William E. King 2309 Pike Street San Diego, CA 92109
The gang rape of a 16-year-old girl by more than 30 men in a Rio de Janeiro shantytown has sparked an outcry for justice on social networks and from Brazil’s political class, including suspended President Dilma Rousseff and interim head of state Michel Temer.
Thousands of Internet users have inundated Twitter with messages expressing indignation over the sexual assault, writing under the hashtag #EstuproNaoECulpaDaVitima (Rape is not the victim’s fault).
The attack came to light when video footage showing the minor naked and unconscious was uploaded to social networking sites, with the author of the recording saying the girl was raped by at least 30 people.
Temer on Friday vehemently denounced last weekend’s attack, saying it was absurd that “barbaric crimes like this” were still occurring in the 21st century.
Rousseff, who was suspended from office earlier this month and could be permanently removed if found guilty in a Senate trial of violating budget laws, demanded that those responsible be “identified and punished.”
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Police have already identified four people who allegedly directly or indirectly participated in the gang rape but have not yet made any arrests.
The girl told police that she went to a “favela” on Rio’s west side early Saturday to visit her boyfriend.
She said she was alone with him for several hours, but later lost consciousness until Sunday, when she awoke naked, drugged and surrounded by 33 men armed with rifles and handguns.
The case has provoked debate in Brazil about the nation’s alleged “rape culture” and sparked numerous denunciations of the country’s “male chauvinist society” on both social networking sites and offline.
According to figures from the Public Safety Forum, a non-governmental organization, a woman is raped every 11 minutes in Brazil and 47,636 people were victims of sexual aggression in 2014.
Seattle, Washington: Four changes that happen to vaginas when women stop having sex
Frank L. Mathison 2251 Chardonnay Drive Seattle, WA 98109
An active sex life is known to have its own list of health benefits. From boosting your immune system to even reducing your risk of a heart attack, regular sex is almost as good as physical exercise. However, not every woman gets to experience a sexually active life for a variety of reasons.
If you’ve ever wondered whether lack of sex can have an impact on your vagina then the answer to your question is: yes, it can. Here is a look at the four most common changes to vaginas that women experience because of not having sex.
Sex can hurt
It’s normal to expect some kind of physical discomfort when having sex for the first time or after a really long break. Brett Worly, MD, an ob-gyn at The Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center explains that this happens because the muscles aren’t used to having sex, according to a report in prevention.com.
Sometimes the vaginal muscles can get so contracted that any kind of penetration – be it from a finger or even a tampon – becomes virtually impossible. This condition is known as vaginismus and requires medical attention. Sex therapist Holly Richmond advises seeing a gynecologist to get a diagnosis and a recommendation for a pelvic-floor physical therapist.
Loss of sex drive
When a person stops having orgasms for a long period of time, their body stops requesting them. In other words, a woman might experience a lack of lust and may get accustomed to a sexless routine. Of course, this also means that you can lose out on all the health benefits that sexual activity has to offer.
Oestrogen levels in women fall dramatically during menopause. This has a major effect on your lady bits as the vagina and vulva have more oestrogen receptors than any other part of the body. Therefore it is important for even postmenopausal women to indulge in regular sex as an inactive sex life can result in vaginal atrophy. For those who don’t know, vaginal atrophy occurs when the walls of the vagina dry out and become more vulnerable to tears and injuries.
St. Louis, Missouri: Rights groups slam India death sentence for rapists
Jose S. Gray 37 Mandan Road Saint Louis, MO 63101
Indian rights groups voiced dismay Saturday over death sentences handed to four men for a fatal gang rape, saying it was unlikely to reverse the country’s “rape crisis” despite a clamour for their execution.
After a seven-month fast-track trial, Judge Yogesh Khanna said Friday the four men should be “hanged by the neck til they are dead” for the brutal rape of a 23-year-old woman on a bus last December.
After the sentencing, people distributed sweets on the street in celebration and tweeted that “justice” had been served.
But on Saturday, rights network Avaaz slammed the verdict, urging the government instead to launch a mass public education campaign to stop India’s “rape epidemic”.
“Executing these men won’t bring back the woman they raped or reverse India’s rape crisis. The only way to stop rape before it starts is with a massive public education campaign,” the online activist network said.
Indian newspapers splashed the sentencing on their front pages along with mug shots of the four convicts whose crime shocked the nation and triggered weeks of street protests.
“Showed no mercy, got no mercy” screamed a banner headline in the English language Hindustan Times while the Times of India said “Death for four for dastardly, diabolical, brutal crime”.
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In the lead-up to the sentencing, there had been a huge clamour for the four — Vinay Sharma, Akshay Thakur, Pawan Gupta, and Mukesh Singh — to be executed for their attack on the physiotherapy student and her male companion on December 16.
The papers, however, wondered if handing down the death penalty in rape cases would make women any safer across the country.
Last year, there were 24,923 cases of rape reported in India, according to the government’s official statistics. But the actual figure is believed to be far higher with experts saying women are reluctant to file complaints for fear of social stigma in the socially conservative nation.
An editorial in The Hindu newspaper was scathing in its criticism of the verdict, saying it would serve little purpose other than providing a “false comfort of retribution”.
“In meting out the hangman’s justice… the sessions court has regrettably missed an opportunity to turn the discourse away from retributive punishment to constructive dialogue on policing and legal reforms,” it wrote under the headline, “Crimes death can’t wish away”.
The victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, died of massive internal injuries on December 29 after being lured on to the private bus by the gang following a cinema trip with a companion.
In handing out the sentence, judge Khanna said the crime fell into the “rarest of rare category” that justified capital punishment under India’s legal system.
Kavita Krishnan of the All India Progressive Women’s Association said the punishment was hardly going to serve as a deterrent.
“In the same court, there were acquittals in 20 out of 23 rape cases. Potential rapists can see how remote their chances of conviction are, leave alone the punishment,” she told AFP.
The Hindustan Times said the verdict was “not an occasion to rejoice” because it would not stop sex crimes. To make India safer for women, “we must tackle deep-rooted social problems”, it said.
Human Rights Watch called the verdict “troubling”.
“It may have a popular appeal and seem like the easy option, but the government should abolish this inhumane measure and get down to the harder task of institutional reform,” the group’s regional director Meenakashi Ganguly said.
“That would be the way to really protect women and girls from future attacks,” she added.
Warden, Washington: MP’s ex-guard among six under probe for murder of politicians
James G. Newton 3037 Goodwin Avenue Warden, WA 98857
Six people are being investigated in connection with the killing of two East Pokot politicians three weeks ago.
Among the suspects are a former bodyguard of Tiaty MP Asman Kamama and a former chief.
The suspects are under investigation over the killing of Loyamorok MCA Frederick Kibet Cheretei and Tiaty constituency aspirant Symon Pepee Kitambaa.
The others include an MCA aspirant and a boda boda rider
According to investigators, one of the suspects was an AP officer attached to Mr Kamama’s escort before resigning and going into business.
Though top security officers remained tight-lipped about the investigations, detectives told The Standard that some of the six were already in custody, having been arrested between Wednesday and Sunday morning after they were called back to give further statements.
County Police Commandant Peter Ndung’u yesterday requested that he be given time to deal with the matter before divulging the names to the media.
“I know the issue but please give me some time and I will get back to you. For now, kindly allow me not to say anything about it. I will call you for a briefing,” he said.
Rift Valley Regional Coordinator Wanyama Musiambo also promised to issue the details later, only confirming that the investigations were nearing their end.
“We are going to the third week and I can tell you on Tuesday we are bringing it to a close. You will get full details and the names of those going to court. Let us leave it there for now,” he said.
The investigator said the AK-47 that was used to kill Cheretei and Kitambaa on the night of Friday February 18 at Alfa Bar and Restaurant at the Marigat-Kabarnet junction was registered to one of the suspects.
“I know all the names you have but I am not the right person to talk to the media. I know they had been recalled to record further statements and I have not seen them again. It is possible they are in custody,” said an officer who asked not to named.
Two hooded men stormed a shed where the two politicians were talking with five other people – all from Tiaty – and shot them dead.
They then burnt the MCA’s vehicle before vandalising Kitambaa’s and snatching a yellow paper bag. Police are trying to find out what it contained.
Officers collected five spent cartridges from the scene.
Last week, Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet, through the National Police Service spokesperson George Kinoti, said preliminary and technical investigations had narrowed down the field to six suspects, who were being subjected to forensic inquiries before any arrests are made.
“Following the murders, the police commenced immediate investigations to unearth the authors of the crime. As at now, we have recorded a number of crucial statements from witnesses and other persons of interest,” said Boinnet.
An investigator yesterday told The Standard that the gun used was transported to from Naudo to Loruk by a rider on the day of killings.
“The boda boda rider was paid Sh6,000 by a CDF official from Tiaty, who is also under investigation,” said the investigator.
Baltimore, Maryland: ‘Rape of mentally-disabled woman probably not terrorism’
Christopher P. Orr 3214 Hamilton Drive Baltimore, MD 21217
The rape of a mentally-disabled woman in south Tel Aviv earlier this month was most likely not terrorism, the police said Sunday, in a statement that ran counter to initial descriptions of the event.
In an interview with Army Radio on Sunday morning, police spokeswoman Merav Lapidot said: “At this stage, we aren’t ruling it [terrorism] out, but it looks most likely that the case isn’t moving in that direction. We are still checking what happened and there are differing versions of events given by the suspects.”
Lapidot said investigators “understood from the beginning that there is probably more to this case than it seems, and it appears that this is probably not a terrorist attack.”
The case gained further prominence last week when Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu wrote a Facebook post in which he said the case deserves wall-to-wall condemnation and “can you imagine what the response would be if it was the other way around [if Jews were accused of gang-raping a mentally disabled Palestinian woman]?” The post was perceived as an attack on the media and the Israeli Left, and garnered widespread criticism. On Friday, Netanyahu wrote a post in which he said he regretted the earlier comment, and that he should have waited until the investigation was complete.
On May 16, two Palestinians – including a 42-year-old father of three from Nablus and a minor were arrested on suspicion of raping the 20-year-old woman who lived with her aunt in the same apartment building as the three suspects.
A third man wanted in the case remains at large.
In the second remand hearing for the suspects on May 22, Sgt.-Maj. Yisrael Sianov, the officer representing the police, said the case was one of terrible cruelty and brutality and that it “had a racial background to it,” including the yelling of anti-Semitic slurs at the victim during the act.
Police have also been the subject of criticism for not reporting the crime to the public – especially considering that one suspect remains at large – but Lapidot said they were not hiding the case, that the remand hearings were open to the public and at no point did they try to take out a gag order.
A number of issues in the case have emerged in the three hearings held so far, including that the lawyer of one of the suspects lawyers has pointed out that police have yet to find the video of the rape his client allegedly filmed with a cellphone, and that the minor arrested in the crime had a prior relationship with the alleged victim.
Police also have had difficulties questioning the victim due to her disability, and have required the assistance of a special investigator.
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