IWD – Middle East Perspective ღ


Because I am a woman, I must make unusual efforts to succeed, If I fail, no one will say, she doesn’t have what it takes. They will say, women don’t have what it takes.

Happy International Women’s Day to all women around the world!

Though the Arab Spring offered great promise for helping women gain equal human rights in the Middle East, the reality was that not a lot changed.

Women currently make up 49.7% of around 345.5 million people in the Middle East and North Africa region. But despite the many advances made in terms of closing the gender gap in health, political representation, and labor force participation, many other barriers remain.

In my country – Egypt – there is a popular saying: “Break a girl’s rib, and she’ll grow two”.

– Spousal rape is not recognised in the laws.

– A woman inherits half of what a man inherits.

– A Muslim man can marry a non-Muslim woman, but a Muslim woman can not marry a non-Muslim man

– Sexual harassment and assault of women and girls in public spaces still exist in spite of the efforts to combat the practice.

Though Egypt is often considered  as one of the more liberal countries in the Middle East being a female isn’t an easy thing.


On International Women Day we don’t celebrate as much as we fight for many rights we want to gain, for respect, appreciation, equality and much more

Still there is hope because women activists, who generally come from the educated segments of society are challenging the status quo; demanding equality in the family and society and calling for women’s economic, political, and social empowerment.


Towards a free and equal world

Towards a free and equal world is an info-graphic that highlights the 78 countries where adult consensual same-sex sexual conduct is criminalised including the 7 countries where this conduct is punishable by death. We know that ending punitive laws based on sexual orientation and gender identity reinforces human rights and supports access to life-saving HIV services. The agenda addressing criminalization, supportive legal and protected environment is critical to achieving the UNAIDS vision of Zero new infections. Zero discrimination. Zero AIDS-related deaths.

Millions of people live in fear and isolation because of their sexual orientation and gender identity.
Millions of people live in fear and isolation because of their sexual orientation and gender identity.

#womenshould: UN Women ad series reveals widespread sexism

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UN Women just made their latest ad campaign public and it proves a known but undoubtedly terrifying fact: finding sexism in the world is as easy as typing a few words into the world’s largest search engine. The ads match women’s faces with beginning search terms such as “women cannot” and “women shouldn’t” and show how gender prejudices can rear its ugly head on a universal tool like Google by disclosing the autocomplete suggestions which reek of misogyny. As if to silence their voices, the phrases of the Google searches were placed over the mouths of women portraits.