Sunday, 14 November 2010

development miracles

well, that is what this blog calls them, not sure that I would.  It is reported that a number of countries have made huge strides in human development, thus improving life expectancy. and that one of the reasons they have been able to do this is that they have committed to the empowerment of women.  Availability of contraception.  Increase in the minimum age of marriage.  Ability of women to divorce.  You get the picture.  But where are these countries?  Not where you (probably) think.  They are in the Middle East and North Africa.  Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Oman, Saudi Arabia.  Of these only Tunisia is anything like a democracy, and arguably Oman has its liberal moments, but the rest are Muslim countries which are not at all big on democracy, human rights and the rule of law.  So, er... well, it is always good to have one's preconceptions challenged, hein?

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