UAE Embassy celebrates Emirati Women’s Day in DC

UAE Embassy celebrates Emirati Women’s Day in DC
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UAE Embassy celebrates Emirati Women’s Day in DC

UAE and France reunite for International Alliance for Protection of Heritage in Conflict Areas. UAE Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and French President Francois Hollande. Photo courtesy of PR News Wire

UAE and France reunite for International Alliance for Protection of Heritage in Conflict Areas. UAE Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and French President Francois Hollande. Photo courtesy of PR News Wire

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Embassy in Washington, DC marked the occasion of Emirati Women’s Day today, Monday August 28, 2017. The annual celebration recognizes the important role of women in UAE society.

The theme of the day, “Women are partners in giving,” highlights women’s contributions to volunteerism and humanitarian work. The theme is in line with the designation of 2017 as the “Year of Giving,” as decreed by the UAE’s President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

“Women are the backbone of Emirati society and have played a significant role in the development of our country,” said UAE Ambassador to the United StatesYousef Al Otaiba. “Our leadership and constitution fully support the empowerment of women, and encourage them to participate in all fields.”

According to Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba, Emirati women hold leadership positions at numerous UAE foundations and philanthropic organizations, helping the UAE achieve its place as the world’s largest per capita donor of foreign aid. In addition to humanitarian efforts, women in the UAE play important roles across a range of sectors, including STEM, business, military, government, and education.

“There are no barriers preventing Emirati women from succeeding and playing active roles in our society,” said Shaima Gargash, Head of Communications at the UAE Embassy. “I am proud to represent my country as a female diplomat in Washington, DC.”

In recent years, the UAE has made significant progress in women’s advancement and gender equality.

  • The UAE is the first country in the region to enact legislation requiring female board members in every government agency.
  • According to the 2016 WEF Global Gender Gap Report, the UAE is tied for #1 globally for women’s literacy and secondary and tertiary education enrollment.
  • Emirati women hold 66% of government jobs, including 30% of senior decision-making positions.
  • Women in the UAE make up 46% of the country’s graduates in STEM.

Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Founder and Chairwoman of the UAE General Women’s Union, established Emirati Women’s Day in 2015. The date, August 28, marks the anniversary of the founding of the General Women’s Union on August 28, 1975.

More information on women in the United Arab Emirates can be found here.

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Managing Writer at The Arab Daily News
RAY HANANIA — Columnist

Ray Hanania is an award winning political and humor columnist who analyzes American and Middle East politics, and life in general. He is an author of several books.

"I write about three topics, the Middle East, politics and life in general. I often take my life experiences and offer them in an entertaining way to readers, and I take on the toughest topics like the Israel-Palestine conflict and don't pull any punches about what I feel is fair. But, my priority is always about writing the good story."

Hanania covered Chicago Politics and Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992. Hanania began writing in 1975 when he published The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He later published “The National Arab American Times” newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East food stores in 48 American States (2004-2007).

Hanania writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at, and at, and at He has also published weekly columns in the Jerusalem Post newspaper,, Newsday Newspaper in New York, the Orlando Sentinel Newspapers, and the Arlington Heights Daily Herald.

Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem.

Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media. In 2009, Hanania received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. He was honored for his writing skills with two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild. In 1990, Hanania was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times editors for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.

His writings have also been honored by two national Awards from ADC for his writing, and from the National Arab American Journalists Association.

The managing editor of Suburban Chicagoland Online News website, Hanania's columns also appear in the Southwest News Newspaper Group of 8 newspapers.

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