Saturday, September 15, 2007

On September 15, ...

... 1978, British antiterrorist police arrested a woman working as a mechanics instructor in a London garage, charging that she was "one of the most wanted members" of Germany's Baader-Meinhof gang. Astrid Proll (left) was suspected of involvement in murders and of membership in that group and its "successor, the Red Army Faction." Initially fighting extradition to Germany on murder charges, eventually Proll returned and stood trial on charges of bank robbery and falsifying documents. In February 1980 she was sentenced to 5-1/2 years yet released immediately, having received credit for time already served.
... 1939, Elizabeth Odio Benito (right) was born in Puntarenas, Costa Rica. She grew up in the country's capital, San José. Encouraged by an uncle to follow the family tradition of lawyering, in 1964 she received a master's degree from the University of Costa Rica, eventually becoming a professor, Vice President for Academic Affairs, and interim President there. Her extensive work for human rights included membership on U.N. Sub-Commission on the Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities and service as Special Rapporteur to the U.N. Sub-Commission on Discrimination and Intolerance based on Religion or Creed. Of her tenure as Vice President of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia from 1993-1995, she told Women's Human Rights net that she, along with then-President Gabrielle Kirk McDonald and the Office of the Prosecutor,
undertook the task of making visible the sexual and gender violence that women suffer both in 'peacetime' and in international and internal armed conflicts -- a task left undone since World War II. We also made visible that rape and other sexual abuses were used as weapons of war, as means of terror ....

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