x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Conference to improve Arab women's lives

Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak hopes that the forthcoming conference leads to improved living standards of all Arab women.

ABU DHABI // Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak hopes that the forthcoming conference to be held by the Arab Women's Organisation (AWO) in Abu Dhabi leads to improved living standards of all Arab women. The conference, on Nov 11-13 at the Emirates Palace hotel, will highlight the UAE's continuous efforts in supporting and empowering women to play important roles in the political, economic and social lives of the nation. Sheikha Fatima, the chairwoman of the UAE Women's Federation, supreme chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation and chairwoman of the AWO, stressed that women have advanced in various fields through the political empowerment programme led by Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed, President of the UAE and Ruler of Abu Dhabi. Emirati women have important responsibilities in the legislative, executive and judiciary sectors of the national government, Sheikha Fatima said, according to the state news agency, WAM. Sheikha Fatima cited four Cabinet positions filled by women, a 50 per cent increase from the previous Cabinet and the highest percentage in any Arab country. Additionally, Sheikha Fatima noted that 22 per cent of Federal National Council members are women. In business, women have made great strides through the establishment of the UAE Business Women's Council, which has more than 12,000 members. The AWO is an intergovernmental organisation established under the League of Arab States; its headquarters is in Egypt. Sheikha Fatima was preceded as chairwoman by Sheikha Sabeeka of Bahrain, who served from 2005 to 2007. The conference, which meets every two years, consists of member state delegates led by the first ladies of the Arab countries or their representatives. The AWO's aim, through its conferences and other activities, is to empower Arab women, raise awareness about the necessity of engaging women as equal partners in the development of society and to co-ordinate Arab efforts to elevate awareness of women's role in society. hkhalaf@thenational.ae