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V-Day & Glamour Magazine Present Stories of Women In Conflict / Women of Peace, L.A February 21st


On Wednesday, February 21st in Los Angeles, powerful women in entertainment will band together to champion the personal stories of "women in conflict/women of peace" at a pre-Oscar event hosted by Eve Ensler, Cindi Leive, and Paula Wagner. Co-hosting the event in support of V-Day's global movement to end violence against women and girls are Rosario Dawson, Sally Field, Jane Fonda, Salma Hayek, Marisa Tomei and Kerry Washington.

While war exponentially increases crimes of violence against women and girls, it also draws attention to the strength and resilience among women rebuilding communities and leading governments to peaceful solutions. V-Day is dedicating its 2007 Spotlight campaign to Women In Conflict Zones to communicate these stories to global audiences and media. Introduced by V-Day star supporters, women who have persevered through conflict will share their personal stories of uprising:

Margaret Jayah, A Survivor, Sierra Leone

At merely 13 years old, Margaret Jayah was abducted by rebels in Sierra Leone. A sex slave for nine months, she was ganged raped, and to this day does not know who fathered her seven year old son. Margaret persevered through this horrific experience and is currently in high school at 20 years old.

Myriam Merlet, Chief of Staff of the Ministry for Women, Haiti

Like many who sought exodus from poverty and repression, she fled Haiti in the 1970's. After a politically active life in the Haitian Diaspora, Myriam returned to Haiti with her young family in 1986. As both a political activist and professional, Myriam remains committed to the process of social and political change in Haiti. Myriam is also a published author on women's rights, race and gender issues.

Zoya, Revolutionary Association of Women of Afghanistan (RAWA), Afghanistan

Born in Kabul in 1976, Zoya grew up during the wars that ravaged Afghanistan and took the lives of her parents who were murdered by Muslim fundamentalists. Today, Zoya works in refugee camps in Afghanistan and Pakistan and represents RAWA globally, speaking out for the plight of Afghan women. Zoya is the subject of the 2002 book "Zoya's Story: An Afghan Woman's Struggle for Freedom."