Reem says UAE women always showed the way

A Staff Reporter
Filed on March 11, 2008

DUBAI - Addressing delegates and students from across the world on the role Emirati women played in the country, Minister of State Reem Ibrahim Al Hashimi shed light on the fact that the women in the UAE had always been leaders since the time of pearl diving.

“As we reflect on our past and particularly of this region, we can see that at the very heart of our tradition, religion and culture, women have taken on leadership positions. For instance, the history of the UAE, when our men were pearl divers struggling with the harsh lifestyle of that age, and being absent for months on end from their families, the women had to manage the day to day activities of family life, had to worry about ensuring that their homes were safe and children fed and had to tend and take care of the ill and injured.”

Recalling her trip to the United States as a diplomat, the minister said, “Many believed that because we dressed differently, followed different traditions and were not very visible in public life, our impact was limited. My answer has remained consistent throughout, the forms of leadership may have changed, but we, at our very core, have always taken the lead.”

Touching on the different roles played by women in the UAE, she said she admired and respected the commitment of women, who were silent heroes earlier, efficiently managing households.

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