Un­sur­prised

Muscat Daily - - NATION -

ing pre­vi­ously run the en­vi­ron­ment brief in Rouhani’s of­fice.

Laya Joneydi was ap­pointed as the vice pres­i­dent for le­gal af­fairs, while another woman, Shahin­dokht Mowlaverdi, was named as a spe­cial ad­vi­sor for The head of the newly formed Re­formist Women’s Party, Zahra Sho­jaei, said she was un­sur­prised by the lack of women min­is­ters given the con­tin­ued op­po­si­tion of many law­mak­ers and pow­er­ful re­li­gious fig­ures be­hind the scenes.

A large in­de­pen­dent fac­tion of MPs ‘are still not in favour of women min­is­ters’, said Sho­jaei.

But she said women vice pres­i­dents ac­tu­ally have more power than min­is­ters and have al­ready bro­ken the ta­boo on putting women in po­si­tions of author­ity.

“We have gone past the sym­bolic stage. Women min­is­ters are im­por­tant but it’s not our only de­mand. Even if Rouhani had ap­pointed sev­eral women min­is­ters, it would not have solved women’s is­sues,” she said. She high­lighted a num­ber of le­gal is­sues - in­clud­ing the need to gain per­mis­sion from a male rel­a­tive to leave the coun­try, lower lev­els of le­gal com­pen­sa­tion and ‘blood money’ for women, and dis­crim­i­na­tory in­her­i­tance laws - as ar­eas that needed ac­tion.

“Rouhani has worked on poli­cies of em­pow­er­ment for women over the past four years, and we want that to con­tinue, as well as amend­ing laws in par­lia­ment.”

The con­tin­ued fraught is­sue of gen­der in Ira­nian pol­i­tics was high­lighted over the week­end, when EU for­eign pol­icy chief Fed­er­ica Mogherini led an all­women team for talks with an all­male Ira­nian con­tin­gent led by For­eign Min­is­ter Mo­ham­mad Javad Zarif.

(AFP)

Iran’s Pres­i­dent Has­san Rouhani speaks to of­fi­cials af­ter his swear­ing in cer­e­mony, in Tehran on Au­gust 5

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