Hidden Nook

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Monday, June 13, 2005

Kuwait Appoints First Woman Cabinent Minister

[Media Source*]

KUWAIT (Reuters) - Kuwait named its first woman cabinet minister on Sunday, less than a month after giving women the vote, a key plank in its democratic reforms...

"Naming a Kuwaiti woman as a minister ... is a special step we had longed to achieve," Sheikh Sabah said.

Kuwait it seems is one of the few Islamic nations establishing political rights for woman within it's borders. According to Reuters, earlier this month two women were appointed to it's municipal council. Although women in Kuwait have won the right to vote in May, they will be unable to exercise that right until 2007.

Women have been fighting for political rights for more than 40 years in Kuwait, the first Gulf state to have an elected parliament. Members of the ruling Sabah family hold key cabinet posts such as the foreign, defense, interior and energy portfolios.

Long-time women's rights activist Lulwa al-Mulla said Mubarak's appointment meant democracy was taking off in Kuwait. "It was a fast decision toward democracy and empowerment of women," she said. "We will be on the proper way to build our country on democratic principles."

As political freedom slowly marches it's way throughout the middle east, hopefully more conservative nations such as Saudi Arabia will take note as the thought of women driving has sparked a backlash in that region. As other middle eastern nations become more inclusive politically towards women in general, more businesses (i.e. tourism) will probably be attracted towards those regions, helping to bring about prosperity to a region mainly known for violence.

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By Darnell Clayton • 7:09 PM • Email Post • •


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