Arab Today, arab today moroccan editor defends womens\ role
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JDP prejudices against veils

Moroccan editor defends womens\' role

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Moroccan editor defends womens\' role

Rabat - Manal Wahbi

Azar Ghazlan, Moroccan journalist and editor of popular women’s magazine Bint Belady, has spoken out against mistreatment of women in the industry. Speaking exclusively to Arabstoday, Ghazlan criticised Arab media for its refusal to allow veiled women on to the screen. “There are still plenty of restrictions on veiled female workers,” she said. “A lot of us felt optimistic that these laws would be relaxed under the Islamist Justice and Development Party (JDP) [Morocco’s ruling power bloc in government], but unfortunately veiled anchors are still barred from appearing on official television channels.” Referring to the relatively low number of Moroccan women hosting their own political programmes, Ghazlan claimed: “This puts a big question mark over issues of exclusion and harassment still being experienced by women in the media.” This is a trend replicated in online media, Ghazlan added, a form she considers her “speciality.” “There are less than 10 percent of women in online journalism today,” she said. “The rest are men.” “Why don’t women want to work in this field?” Ghazlan has vowed to not discriminate against men or women in the workplace, but to judge her staff based on “competency, not gender.” “This doesn’t mean I am completely happy with the number of women at the top of our media institutions.”

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