Comic Relief in Egypt: Women's Rights
Anyone who thinks Islamists lack humor is wrong. The Nour (Light) Party of Egypt, a new political formation established by a faction of the Salafist movement in Egypt, has provided some welcome comic relief in a period of dire crisis, by unveiling a startling new view of women in today’s world. The Salafists, who are Islamists close to the Wahabites in Saudi Arabia, and who reportedly enjoy 5% popular support in Egypt, recently held a conference on the theme of women, the first ever. As evident in a photo of the conference, the speakers were neither fully veiled nor did they wear any headscarves. Seated on the podium against a backdrop of banners in Arabic reading: “Nour (Light) Party: First Women’s Conference,” the three speakers were apparently striving to display the party’s commitment to the total equality between the sexes. No veils, no headscarves, — only full and bushy beards.
One secular Egyptian intellectual commented on the event: “But, hey, where are the women?”