Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Mideast Women Leaders Speak Out

Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Mideast Women Leaders Speak Out

Article excerpt

Recognizing the transforming role that women play in society, Vital Voices Global Partnership has developed a Women's Leadership Initiative in the Middle East. According to Melanne Verveer, chair of the Board of Directors of Vital Voices, "This initiative will equip women leaders from Morocco to Afghanistan, from Turkey to Yemen, with the skills, confidence, and resources they need to participate effectively in the economic, social, and political progress of their countries and the region." It is crucial, Verveer added, "that women gain and fully exercise leadership roles at many levels in business, government and civic life in their countries."

On May 18, 2004 at the Kennedy Center, Vital Voices honored women leaders who have devoted their lives to promoting progress and peace. Outstanding women leaders from Russia, Venezuela and Yemen were honored for their achievements. Special recognition also was given to extraordinary women working for peace and economic opportunity in Haiti and Iraq.

Among the notable women honored for political leadership was Amat Al-Aleem Alsoswa, minister of human rights in Sana'a, Yemen. Described as a trailblazer, moldbreaker or pioneer, Alsoswa is considered a driving force for women's leadership in Yemen. …

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