We must join efforts to make our countries prosperous and safe for women. Only then can the whole society benefit. This was underlined by Antoņina Ņenaševa, Deputy Speaker of the Saeima, at the Reykjavík Global Forum – Women Leaders in Reykjavik, Iceland.
The Deputy Speaker stressed that being a woman politician is still a big challenge: for instance, women politicians are often excluded from important political processes, and the media often do not pay attention to their political stance and contribution, but rather to how women look, what they wear, and how they raise their children. At the same time, women leaders have a task of encouraging other women to get involved in politics, setting an example for them and advocating for a better life for women in their country.
Deputy Speaker Ņenaševa recalled that, growing up in Latvia in the 1990s, she had not seen inspiring examples of women in politics. Things started to change rapidly in 1999, when Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga became the first woman President of Latvia, and she still inspires many girls and young women in our country, said Ņenaševa.
Latvia is currently working to improve women's rights, stressed the Deputy Speaker, citing the Istanbul Convention, which is already submitted to the Saeima for ratification. We are on our way to a better society and a more inclusive Latvia, said Ņenaševa.
Referring to the war in Ukraine, the Deputy Speaker stressed that women in Ukraine have proven that they can also play an active role in defending their country by helping civilians and the army through volunteer work, by assisting children and the elderly who need to get to safety, and, of course, by joining the army and fighting against the enemy directly.
“'We must do our utmost to help Ukraine win this war. Only after the whole territory of Ukraine is liberated, will women be safe enough to fight for equal rights in their country,”' stressed Ņenaševa.
The sixth annual Reykjavík Global Forum – Women Leaders is taking place in Iceland these days, with the mission of empowering women around the world, and it brings together influential leaders as well as innovative problem solvers. Deputy Speaker Ņenaševa addressed the Forum in a parliamentary session.
Saeima Press Service