Posts tagged ‘middle east’

“Female Saudi film director breaks taboos in Venice”

Female Saudi film director breaks taboos in Venice

Mon, 3 Sep 2012 10:21 GMT

Source: Reuters // Silvia Aloisi

VENICE, Sept 3 (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia’s first female director has made her debut at the Venice film festival, exploring the limitations placed on women in the conservative Islamic kingdom through the tale of a strong-willed 10-year-old girl living in Riyadh.

The film, which the director says is the first to have been entirely shot in Saudi Arabia, follows the everyday life of young Wadjda and her attempts to circumvent restrictions and break social barriers – both at school and at home.

Constantly scolded for not wearing a veil, listening to pop music and not hiding in front of men, Wadjda uses guile to get her own way…

Read the full article: http://www.trust.org/trustlaw/news/female-saudi-film-director-breaks-taboos-in-venice/

September 3, 2012 at 8:58 am 1 comment

Counterpoint: “Saudi women going to Games is a sham” @SAISHopkins #olympics #hwhtw

Much has been made (including by HWHTW – see: News: “Saudi Arabia To Send Olympic Women Athletes For First Time”) of the gender  milestones reached with the 2012 Olympics: more women athletes than men, and  female participants from every participating country, including Saudi Arabia.  Jocelyne Cesari, a professor at Johns Hopkins SAIS, argues that the presence of female Saudi athletes at the Olympics does not signify a big step forward for Saudi women:

“But if [judo competitor Wojdan] Shaherkani had withdrawn, it would not have been a setback for Saudi women because her inclusion was not a sign of advancement. The presence of Saudi women is the result of several months of pressure by the International Olympics Committee on Saudi Arabia to include women competitors or face being banned from participation.

“The situation for female athletes in Saudi Arabia is bleak.

“Saudi women in general are denied the right to practice sports. Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world that prevents girls from taking part in sports in government schools. Physical education is allowed only in private schools. Women are not allowed to play in official sports clubs or even watch matches in stadiums. Girls’ football, volleyball and basketball games in private schools and colleges are held secretly.”

Read the full article: http://www.cnn.com/2012/08/01/opinion/cesari-saudi-women-sports/index.html

August 1, 2012 at 12:57 pm 1 comment

News: “Saudi Arabia To Send Olympic Women Athletes For First Time” @DonnaAN1 #olympics #hwhtw

Saudi Arabia To Send Olympic Women Athletes For First Time

By Bob Bensch and Donna Abu-Nasr

Saudi Arabia will send female athletes to the Olympic Games for the first time, the International Olympic Committee said, ending a ban by the kingdom where women aren’t allowed to drive.

Wodjan Ali Seraj Abdulrahim Shahrkhani will compete in judo at the London Games and Sarah Attar will run the 800 meters. The athletes, who were invited by the IOC, were submitted by the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee before the July 9 deadline, the IOC said. The Saudis had previously sent all-male teams.

“This is very positive news and we are delighted to welcome these two athletes in London in a few weeks’ time,” IOC President Jacques Rogge said in a statement on the governing body’s website.

Read the full article: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-07-12/saudi-arabia-to-send-women-athletes-to-olympics-for-first-time.html

July 12, 2012 at 11:17 am 2 comments

“The United Arab Emirates – a Fertile Frontier for Financial Women” via @VitalVoices @HuffingtonPost #hwhtw

Anne Izzillo of the HuffPost reports that the UAE is the place to be for women entrepreneurs:

“This is what we found: If you are a woman looking to start a business in the UAE — this is your moment. Today, women are forming start-ups in the region that range from multi-million dollar private equity funds and tech start-ups to western-inspired fashion labels and successful yoga studio chains. The opportunities are ripe for local and foreign women alike, thanks to several key factors that are leading a female business boom in the region.

“It starts with the government’s commitment to providing a high standard of education for both men and women. Today, the literacy rate for UAE women is 90 percent. Also, it is encouraging that the UAE Constitution promotes gender equality, including equal pay for equal work under the Labor Law and the right for women to inherit property. All of these factors have created a fertile environment for the seeds of female entrepreneurship to grow.”

Read the full article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/anne-izzillo/united-arab-emirates_b_1522362.html

May 18, 2012 at 12:08 pm Leave a comment

“Why Women Are a Foreign Policy Issue” @mverveer #hwhtw

U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues Melanne Verveer has penned a brilliant and compelling piece on women for Foreign Policy.  A must-read!

Why Women Are a Foreign Policy Issue

The most pressing global problems simply won’t be solved without the participation of women. Seriously, guys.

On a trip to Afghanistan in the summer of 2009, not long after my appointment as the U.S. State Department’s ambassador at large for global women’s issues, I stopped for dinner with a group of Afghan women activists in Kabul. One woman opened our conversation with a plea: “Please don’t see us as victims, but look to us as the leaders we are.”

Those words have stuck with me as President Barack Obama’s administration has endeavored to put women at the heart of its foreign policy. For generations, the United States too often viewed the world’s women as victims of poverty and illiteracy, of violence and seemingly unbreakable cultural traditions — essentially, as beneficiaries of aid. Women’s issues existed on the margins, segregated from the more “strategic” issues of war, peace, and economic stability. Now, in a time of transformative change — from the rise of new economic powers to a growing chorus of voices against repressive regimes in the Arab world — promoting the status of women is not just a moral imperative but a strategic one; it’s essential to economic prosperity and to global peace and security. It is, in other words, a strategy for a smarter foreign policy.

Read the full article: http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/04/23/why_women_are_a_foreign_policy_issue

April 28, 2012 at 12:05 pm 2 comments

“How Come You Allow Little Girls to Get Married?”

An eye-opening report on child marriage in Yemen from Human Rights Watch:

Read the report: http://www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/reports/yemen1211ForUpload_0.pdf

December 15, 2011 at 12:15 pm Leave a comment

“(Wo)manning the tills in Saudi Arabia: Women start work as shopkeepers” #hwhtw

Saudi Arabia’s new policy on women working in retail shops is great news – not only for women shoppers, but for women who need jobs.

“A decade of embarrassing discussions with salesmen about undergarment sizes and styles is coming to an end as Saudi Arabia implements the first phase of the Labor Ministry’s directives on hiring more women as shopkeepers. ”

http://www.albawaba.com/editorchoice/womanning-tills-saudi-arabia-women-start-work-shopkeepers-400168

November 22, 2011 at 12:36 pm Leave a comment

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