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Promises, skepticism at women’s empowerment conference

Farah-Silvana Kanaan- Promises of achieving gender equality abounded from politicians at the first-ever Mashreq Conference on Women’s Economic Empowerment, held in Beirut Saturday. But they were met with hesitation from some attendees who were skeptical that the political will exists to change the status quo.The conference, which focused on women in Lebanon, Iraq and Jordan, took place a day before the main meeting of the fourth Arab Economic and Social Development Summit. Notably, at Saturday’s event, Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri announced that Lebanon would launch a national action plan to increase women’s economic participation in the country.
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