Bangladesh PM receives Global Women’s Leadership Award

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina receives  the Global Women’s Leadership Award from Global Summit of Women President Irene Natividad in Sydney on Friday. (Photo/PID)
Updated 27 April 2018
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Bangladesh PM receives Global Women’s Leadership Award

  • Sheikh Hasina was awarded for leadership in women’s education and entrepreneurship
  • The premier was given the award by the president of the Global Summit of Women, Irene Natividad

DHAKA: Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina received on Friday the Global Women’s Leadership Award in Sydney, Australia.

The US-based Global Summit of Women conferred the award on her for her leadership in women’s education and entrepreneurship in Bangladesh.

She received the award from summit President Irene Natividad at a gala dinner, in the presence of around 1,500 women leaders from across the world.

“We have to forge a new alliance to support women and uphold their rights,” Hasina said as she received the award to a standing ovation. 

“Together, we must act on our shared culture, tradition and values to benefit millions of women in need.”

Last year, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was given the award. Former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon and former UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova have also been among the recipients.

During her 10-year rule, Hasina has created opportunities for Bangladeshi women in the civil service, corporate, development and entrepreneurship sectors.  

But despite social development, violence against women and gender inequality remain key issues to be addressed.

“We need to ensure prompt justice against domestic violence and rape,” said Prof. Ishrat Shamim, president of the Center for Women and Children Studies in Dhaka. “It will make people aware and deter them from resorting to violence against women.”

Child marriage is also a huge concern among women’s rights activists in Bangladesh. Shamim said a minimum age for girls to get married should be set at 18. 

Currently, child marriage for girls is legal in many parts of the country under special circumstances.

“In Bangladesh, we’re experiencing a mixed situation in terms of women’s development,” Farah Kabir, country manager at Action Aid Bangladesh, told Arab News. 

“On the one hand, women are contributing to the development of society with much confidence, while on the other they’re facing violence both inside and outside the home.”

Hasina expressed her resolve to work with world leaders to overcome traditional gender stereotypes and reach out to marginalized and vulnerable women.

She stressed the need to address health hazards specific to women to enhance their productivity, and the need for equal opportunities for women in every walk of life.
 


Mexico demands apology for colonial ‘abuses,’ Spain hits back

Handout photo released by the Mexican presidency showing Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador answering questions during a press conference at the Palacio Nacional, in Mexico City on March 25, 2019. (AFP)
Updated 54 min 2 sec ago
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Mexico demands apology for colonial ‘abuses,’ Spain hits back

  • “The government of Spain deeply regrets that the letter the Mexican president sent to his majesty the king, whose contents we firmly reject, has been made public,” it said in a statement

MEXICO CITY: The 500-year-old wounds of the Spanish conquest were ripped open afresh on Monday when Mexico’s president urged Spain and the Vatican to apologize for their “abuses” — a request Madrid said it “firmly rejects.”
President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, an anti-establishment leftist, reopened the debate over Spain’s centuries of dominance in the New World with a video posted to social media, urging Spanish King Felipe VI and Pope Francis to apologize for the conquest and the rights violations committed in its aftermath.
“I have sent a letter to the king of Spain and another to the pope calling for a full account of the abuses and urging them to apologize to the indigenous peoples (of Mexico) for the violations of what we now call their human rights,” Lopez Obrador, 65, said in the video, filmed at the ruins of the indigenous city of Comalcalco.
“There were massacres and oppression. The so-called conquest was waged with the sword and the cross. They built their churches on top of the (indigenous) temples,” he said.
“The time has come to reconcile. But let us ask forgiveness first.”
Spain’s reaction was swift and unequivocal.
“The government of Spain deeply regrets that the letter the Mexican president sent to his majesty the king, whose contents we firmly reject, has been made public,” it said in a statement.
“The arrival, 500 years ago, of Spaniards to present Mexican territory cannot be judged in the light of contemporary considerations,” it said.
“Our two brother nations have always known how to read our shared past without anger and with a constructive perspective, as free peoples with a shared history and extraordinary influence.”

Lopez Obrador took office in December after a landslide election win that represented a firm break with Mexico’s traditional political parties.
A folksy populist, he pulls no punches in going after traditional elites — but had so far cultivated cordial relations with Spain, including during a visit to Mexico City by Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez earlier this year.
Lopez Obrador made the remarks during a visit to his native Tabasco state, in southern Mexico.
He was later due to visit the nearby city of Centla. On March 14, 1519, the site was the scene of one of the first battles between Spanish conquistador Hernan Cortes and the indigenous peoples of the land now known as Mexico.
With the help of horses, swords, guns and smallpox — all unknown in the New World at the time — Cortes led an army of less than 1,000 men to defeat the Aztec empire, the start of 300 years of Spanish rule over Mexico.