HE Shura Council Deputy Speaker Dr. Hamda bint Hassan Al Sulaiti affirmed the State of Qatar's significant interest in and efforts to empowering women, considering them a model to be followed globally.

Speaking at the Asia Women's Forum 2024 in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, HE Dr. Hamda bint Hassan Al Sulaiti said that Qatar manifests its interest in women's rights through granting them equal opportunities in education and employment, in addition to empowering them to take up leadership positions, with Qatari women having a strong presence in the decision-making arena in the Shura Council, and the fields of education, health, communications, information technology, tourism, corporate boards and banks, the diplomatic corps, and in international organizations.

During a session on eliminating all forms of violence against women and children in Asia, Her Excellency emphasized Qatar's commitment to protecting women's rights and countering violence against them, highlighting the State of Qatar's pioneering measures in that respect, adding that Qatar has been proactive in adopting policies to protect women, despite the fact that this phenomenon is not widespread in the country.

HE the Shura Council Deputy Speaker pointed to the efforts of adopting legislations to protect women from all forms of violence, establishing institutions dedicated to women and family affairs, and promoting respect and appreciation for women and their role in society in educational curricula, with making reference to the prophetic guidance and Islamic teachings that emphasize caring for and respecting women.

In the same context, Her Excellency noted article 34 of Qatar's Permanent Constitution on equality before the law, protecting women from discrimination, and providing them with equal opportunities and enhancing their role in community development.

She also shed light on the Qatar Foundation for Social Work and the work of its various centers each dedicated to a target group or issue, including family affairs, orphans, the elderly, and people with disabilities.

HE Dr. Hamda bint Hassan Al Sulaiti noted the issuance of the Family Law, which regulates litigation procedures in family courts, stressing that the State of Qatar continues to review legislation to improve the protection of women.

Her Excellency underscored that Qatar's approach with regards to women's issues tackles them within the context of family and societal issues, and not in isolation, which leads the state to adopt a comprehensive approach, complimenting efforts towards real progress for women.

HE the Shura Council Deputy Speaker pointed out that despite international efforts to combat violence against women, conflict zones such as Palestine continue to pose significant challenges for women, as their rights undergo systematic violation under occupation, with little to no action on the part of the international community.

Moreover, HE the Shura Council Deputy Speaker referred to the violations of the rights of women and children that are taking place in the Gaza Strip and the occupied Palestinian territories for more than 220 days, deprived of their most basic rights and experiencing violence and killing by the hundreds on daily-basis on the hands of the Israeli occupation's soldiers and settlers.

HE Dr. Hamda bint Hassan Al Sulaiti added that violence against women is not limited to warzones, rather are dispersed globally due to varying circumstances, environments, and cultures as highlighted by reports addressing the causes of violence against women, including challenges related to equality in education and employment, poverty, and the absence of economic and security stability.

Her Excellency emphasized the importance of proper education and upbringing as well as the need to reform social norms and legislations with the aim of creating a supportive and safe environment for women everywhere. HE Al Sulaiti called for setting comprehensive and multi-disciplinary national strategies to ban violence against children, support families in providing full care for children, and include child protection in international development plans.

HE Shura Council Deputy Speaker Dr. Hamda bint Hassan Al Sulaiti concluded by expressing her hope that the forum yields fruitful outcomes that promote women's rights and achieve sustainable development in Asia, stressing the need for a comprehensive Asian declaration that at least guarantees the minimum protection for women and children from all forms of violence.