Sharia Councils: Addressing the Practice and Impact on British-Muslim Women in the UK

Chairwoman: Baroness Cox

Guest Speaker: Dr Elham Manea
(Author of ‘Women and Sharia Law: The Impact of Legal
Pluralism in the UK’)

Guest Speaker: Lesley Abdela
(Woman Rights Activist & Campaigner)

Guest Speaker: Khalid Mahmood MP

Speaker: Ahlam Akram
(Founder of Basira)

Basira presents a second high-profile expert panel that will address the issues surrounding Sharia Councils in the UK, the impact of their practice on British-Muslim women and looking into the resulting legal pluralism.

Date: Monday 24th October, 2016

Time: Doors 3.45pm, panel discussion 4pm-5.30pm

Venue: Committee Room 1, House of Lords, Parliament Square, SW1A 0PW

RSVP: This is a free event but you must register at:

‘MENA Youth: Navigating Gender Rights and Personal Freedoms in the 21st Century’

Basira invites you to attend an informative evening discussion with best- selling author, social activist and blogger, the Jordanian Fadi Zaghmout. Drawing inspiration from his first novel ‘The Bride of Amman’, he will tackle the delicate subject of MENA Youth and how they are navigating gender rights and personal freedoms in the 21st Century. He will also be joined in conversation with Shereen El Feki, the Egyptian-Welsh author of ‘Sex and the Citadel: Intimate Life in a Changing Arab World.’

Date: Friday 17 June, 2016

Time: Doors open 6.30pm for 7pm start, until 9pm

Venue: The Mosaic Rooms, Tower House, 226 Cromwell Road, London SW5 0SW (nearest tube station Earl’s Court)

Tickets: £8 via Billetto or £10 on the door


Refreshments and Book Signing: Juice and snacks will be available for everyone after the discussion and copies of Zaghmout’s novel ‘The Bride of Amman’ will be on sale in both Arabica and English translation at a reduced price and with the author available for book signings.

‘Sharia Councils - Is UK Family Law Not Sufficient For British-Muslim Women?’

Chairwoman: Baroness Uddin

Guest Speaker: Baroness Cox

Guest Speaker: Yasmin Amin
 (Islamic Studies Scholar: University of Exeter)

Guest Speaker: Iftah Nawaz
(Vice President: Association of Muslim Lawyers)

Basira is proud to present a high-profile panel, bringing expert speakers to address the issues surrounding the genesis, development and future of Sharia councils in the UK. Focusing on the application of Sharia law as it impacts on Muslim women, our panellists will look into how best to protect women and promote their integrity in multi-cultural Britain.

Date: Monday 25th April, 2016

Time: Doors 3.45pm, panel discussion 4pm-6pm, networking 6-7pm

Venue: Committee Room G, The House of Lords, Houses of Parliament, Parliament Square, London SW1A 0PW

Tickets: This is a free event but you must RSVP before 21st April, 2016


WOW LogoBasira recently partnered with the WOW Festival at the Southbank Centre in London. Together with WOW, we formed a panel discussion on the subject of 'Women of the Revolutions: Feminism in the Arab world'. It took place on 13 March, 2016.
The talk looked into the core issues affecting women's lives in the Arab region as well as the role they played in revolutionary times and looking into the future for peace building. It discussed the challenges facing Arab women today and the many ways they are being addressed across the region.
Together with WOW, we formed a panel discussion on the subject of 'Women of the RevolutionsFounder of Basira, Ahlam Akram, was joined by the English-Libyan psychotherapist Reem Shelhi (Founder of and creator of Systemic Human Education), Amna Abdul (Founder of 'Mena Women's Platform') and Mariz Tadros (Research Fellow at the Institute of Development Studies based at the University of Sussex). The panel was chaired by Nadia El-Sebai, Director of the Arab British Centre.
The WOW Festival is London's key annual event that celebrates the incredible achievements of women and girls and looks at the most potent topics impacting on the female gender. Always coinciding with International Women's Day in March, this year was the sixth instalment. Due to its success, WOW has now also become global, with fifteen cities on five continents also taking part in joining women's international movements.

For more information:

Basira Presents: Two Short Films
‘Ana Ahlam’ and ‘Shokran Toni’ - Followed by Q+A Session
With Sudanese director Nahid Toubia

Date: Friday, 30th October 2015.
Time: Doors open at 6.30pm for a 7pm start and running to 9pm
Venue: The Mosaic Rooms, 226 Cromwell Road, London, SW5 0SW.
Tickets: £8 on the door or book in advance via Billetto.

‘Ana Ahlam’ and ‘Shokran Toni’Produced by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, ‘Ana Ahlam’ explores gender-based violence as experienced by Palestinian refugee women living in Lebanon. It asks whether or not there is hope for female survivors of domestic abuse.

‘Shokran Toni’ reflects on a special friendship formed between the American novelist Toni Morrison and a group of Sudanese women. When Morrison published an open letter in response to a YouTube video showing a Sudanese woman being lashed for an unknown moral crime, director Nahid Toubia responded by creating this film.

Guest speaker Dr Nahid Toubia is a Sudanese surgeon and women’s health rights activist who specialises in the research into female genital mutilation (FGM). She is the co-founder and director of ‘Research, Action and Information Network for Bodily Integrity of Women’ (RAINBO).