No luck for women in Kuwait

Yesterday’s election in Kuwait was a resounding disappointment for female candidates, who were permitted to compete against men for the first time in the history of Kuwait’s parliament. Although women make up 57% of the 340,000-strong electorate, that didn’t translate into any seats for them. However, many remain hopeful that the increased presence of reformist ...

608083_41829848_kuwait203ap.thumbnail5.jpg
608083_41829848_kuwait203ap.thumbnail5.jpg

Yesterday's election in Kuwait was a resounding disappointment for female candidates, who were permitted to compete against men for the first time in the history of Kuwait's parliament. Although women make up 57% of the 340,000-strong electorate, that didn't translate into any seats for them. However, many remain hopeful that the increased presence of reformist candidates, who will now hold 33 of the 50 seats, will make it easier for women to win next time around. But reformists will have to tread carefully; despite a reputation for standing up to the ruling family, the parliament always faces the possibility of being dissolved at the emir's pleasure.

Yesterday’s election in Kuwait was a resounding disappointment for female candidates, who were permitted to compete against men for the first time in the history of Kuwait’s parliament. Although women make up 57% of the 340,000-strong electorate, that didn’t translate into any seats for them. However, many remain hopeful that the increased presence of reformist candidates, who will now hold 33 of the 50 seats, will make it easier for women to win next time around. But reformists will have to tread carefully; despite a reputation for standing up to the ruling family, the parliament always faces the possibility of being dissolved at the emir’s pleasure.

Ben Fryer is a researcher at Foreign Policy.

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