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Tunisia's Women--Defying the Odds

World  (tags: 'CIVILLIBERTIES!', 'HUMANRIGHTS!', children, conflict, corruption, ethics, freedoms, government, politics, society, Tunisia, Women, world )

- 2203 days ago -
We were able to shift the venue to Tunisia, itself facing elections after a tumultuous year of protests and revolution. A solid record on feminism with progressive programs allowed us to go forward with the Ministry of Women's Affairs.

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Sue H (7)
Tuesday April 10, 2012, 10:42 am
A bit of good news is most welcome. A glimmer of hope for the women of Tunisia.

Kit B (276)
Tuesday April 10, 2012, 10:43 am
Photo: Dr. Sihem Badi, Ministry of Women and Family Affairs

Tunisia, however, defied the odds. The Ennahda claimed for itself the office of prime minister, but in a show of real leadership graciously agreed to let the presidency of the republic go to an internationally known and erudite activist Dr. Moncef Marzouki , who headed the second largest party. “When the president offered me Ministry of Women, some said it’s a token but I thought what represents Tunisia more than our women,” says Hon. Dr. Sihem Badi, who left a comfortable physician’s practice in France to rise to that challenge.

For symbolic punch, we opened the workshop this year on March 8, International Women’s Day. Legislators from 20 OIC member countries, women and men, came to celebrate the new Tunisia and to uphold their commitments to women. We were heartened to hear Ms. Halima Gueni, MP from the Islamist Ennahda, promise that “the new government will try to make even more progressive laws and include even more women than before.“ The upside to being locked away on a rainy cliff hotel, was that work was done, the presentations were lucid and well researched, the debate heated but productive. All parties from Tunisia took part and the final Tunis Plan of Action was everything that we and our collaborator UNFPA had hoped it would be.

By Shazia Z. Rafi - | Women's Media Center |


pam w (139)
Tuesday April 10, 2012, 12:53 pm
Time will tell how seriously in favor of women's rights this new government might be....I wish them well.

Vallee R (280)
Tuesday April 10, 2012, 1:04 pm
We should learn from these countries.

Fiona O (565)
Tuesday April 10, 2012, 4:27 pm
They are to be commended. Very interesting article. Thanks, Kit.

Mary L (132)
Tuesday April 10, 2012, 4:32 pm
As long as the women run things, it will be fine. Let the men get in charge, I'll start worrying.

Kathy Javens (104)
Tuesday April 10, 2012, 9:42 pm
Noted. I am glad there are steps being taken. There is still much work to do, but a few steps in the right direction is a good start. I will keep them in my prayers.

Ludwig Krause (0)
Tuesday April 10, 2012, 11:40 pm
Good news to hear that liberty is being proclaimed in more areas.

Abdessalam D (145)
Wednesday April 11, 2012, 12:50 am
Tunisian women had achieved a very good part of rights.There were some fears after the rise of Islamic political current but such fears are vanishing right now.

wendy webber (28)
Wednesday April 11, 2012, 1:18 am
Definitely we need to learn from this country.

Elizabeth M (65)
Wednesday April 11, 2012, 12:10 pm
Very interesting article. Noted with thanks for posting Kit and Shazia R.
The Tunisia women have worked hard to achieve more rights and the new government promises more progressive laws that will include even more women than before.
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