International Women’s Day Marked By the Ministry

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs marked International Women’s Day on Monday (March 24) in collaboration with the Embassies of Australia and the US. The day was marked under the theme: “Why we need women in diplomacy “.

A workshop, aimed to encourage more Ethiopian young women to become diplomats was attended by Ethiopian diplomats as well as foreign Ambassadors and diplomats. The State Minister of Foreign Affairs noted that in the old days only a few women had the chance to join the Foreign Service because of stereotypes that prevailed at the time.

Today, the number of female diplomats had increased but there was a long way to go in addressing the gender disparity. In welcoming speech, Ambassador Dr. Desta W/Yohannes, Director General of Women, Children and Youth Affairs in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said International Women’s Day was a time to reflect on progress made, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities.

The Ambassador of United States, Patricia Haslach, said educating girls could boost a country’s development more than anything else. She recognized Ethiopian government’s commitment to promote gender equality and to improve Ethiopian women’s health, legal and socio-economic status. Australian Ambassador, Lisa Filipetto, said it was essential to have women’s voices in diplomacy, noting that “as women we can only enjoy our careers if we are helping other women.” This year, International Women’s Day was celebrated globally on March 8th, under the theme of “equality for women is progress for all”.

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