Dubai teen discusses gender equality at EU forum

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Dubai teen discusses gender equality at EU forum
Kehkashan Basu (second from left) at the European Parliament in Brussels, Belgium. -Supplied photo

Dubai - Kehkashan Basu, a 15-year old tenth grader at the Deira International School, was in Brussels as part of the ongoing European Week of Action for Girls.

By Staff Reporter

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Published: Fri 16 Oct 2015, 3:35 PM

A young Dubai resident spoke about gender equality and gender rights at the European Parliament in Brussels, Belgium, on Wednesday.
Kehkashan Basu, a 15-year old tenth grader at the Deira International School, was in Brussels as part of the ongoing European Week of Action for Girls.
Following the UN General Assembly and the agreement on the content of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the EU's Week of Action for Girls is the first opportunity to discuss the outcomes with members of the EU Parliament and other policy makers, as well as parliamentarians from the Global South.
Kehkashan, who was nominated because of her role as the Youth Ambassador of the Germany-based World Future Council, was the youngest speaker and was invited to discuss the place of young women in the Global Development Agenda, as well on whether the SDGs accurately reflections the needs and desires of girls around the world. Among the topics discussed were education, health, reproductive rights, violence and the economic empowerment of females.
"Gender equality, women's rights and human rights are essential to achieve sustainable development, and as such, must be recognised as cross-cutting. Gender-based violence contravenes women's and girls' rights, undermines development and is an affront to our common humanity," she said during her speech.
"The SDGs clearly recognise women's rights in achieving equality - knowing that nobody is better than the other, but that we complement ourselves. There are no easy solutions, but we can do this together. Our dream of realising a sustainable future will depend largely on how successfully civil society empowers women and girls from all walks of life. To do so, we need to create a world of equal opportunity for both men and women."
Other topics discussed included the role of the EU Parliament in implementing the SDGs and ensuring they are adequately reflected in EU policies.
In her closing remarks, Kehkashan quoted American activist Gloria Steinem, saying: "a gender-equal society would be one where the word 'gender' does not exist. Where everyone can be themselves."
reporters@khaleejtimes.com



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