Veiled women allowed to be ministers, says family and population minister

Safaa Abdoun
2 Min Read

CAIRO: Minister of Family and Population Moshira Khattab denied claims that there is a government decree banning women wearing the hijab, Islamic headscarf, from becoming ministers.

According to the Middle East News Agency (MENA), Khattab made these statements on Monday during a joint meeting with Minister of Endowments Mahmoud Hamdy Zaqzouq and female students from all over the Muslim world at Camp Abu Bakr Al-Sidiq in Alexadria.

Khattab explained that “women in Egypt enjoy complete freedom and that there is a minister in the current cabinet who has been veiled long before she was appointed as minister, in addition to a number of parliament members who don the veil.

The minister was referring to Aisha Abdel Hady, the Minister of Manpower and Migration, who was appointed by Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif in January 2006 and became the first veiled minister in Egypt.

Abdel Hady was appointed nearly one month after the Muslim Brotherhood’s victory in the People’s Assembly elections, when they won 20 percent of the seats. At the time, political analysts said that the ruling National Democratic Party (NDP) appointed her to associate themselves with Islam.

A few years ago, when Minister of Culture Farouk Hosni made statements in a newspaper interview criticizing hijab and describing it as “a step backward for Egyptian women, 130 members of parliament called for his resignation.

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