Press Esc to close
Friday 29 August 2014
News updated at 3:28 PM IST
Weather
Max: 25.6°C
Min : 19.7°C
In Bangalore
Generally cloudy

Iran foreign ministry appoints first-ever spokeswoman

Tehran, Aug 29, 2013 (AFP)

Iran's Foreign Ministry has appointed career diplomat Marzieh Afkham as its new spokesperson, the first time the Islamic republic has named a woman to the position, reports said today.
With nearly three decades of service at the ministry, Afkham has been director of its media and public diplomacy department since 2010, Iranian media reported.
"She is seasoned and experienced in the field of media diplomacy," incumbent spokesman Abbas Araqchi told the ISNA news agency, announcing the appointment.
"Those who have criticism about this will understand that her expertise was the only factor in this appointment," he added in reference to opposition voiced by members of the parliament's ultra-conservative faction.
Hojatoleslam Morteza Hosseini, a cleric from a powerful religious faction, said the clergy "might be opposed" to the employment of women to such posts.
"We decided to deliver a caution to foreign minister (Mohammad Javad Zarif), so that he appoints a man instead of a woman" as his spokesperson, Hosseini was quoted as saying by the 7 Sobh daily.
Araqchi had said on Tuesday another woman, without naming her, was being groomed to become the Iran's first-ever ambassador.
Afkham's appointment comes as moderate Iranian President Hassan Rowhani has reportedly asked officials to appoint women to high ranking posts.
His cabinet is dominated by men, except for Elham Aminzadeh, who is the vice president for parliamentary affairs.
During his election campaign, Rowhani vowed that "discrimination against women will not be tolerated" in his administration.
Although better than those of many regional Arab countries, Iran's laws since the 1979 Islamic revolution have been criticised as unfair to women in matters of marriage, divorce and inheritance.
While women can hold key posts, including in the parliament and the cabinet, they are currently not allowed to stand in presidential elections.
Iran's clergy, which still holds sway in the country, defends the laws, saying they are designed to protect against a Western lifestyle they say takes advantage of women. (AFP)
BOD 08291838


Go to Top

Photo Gallery
Union Railway Minister Sadananda Gowda during a visit to Ernakulam railway station in Kochi ...

Union Railway Minister Sadananda Gowda during a visit to Ernakulam railway station in Kochi ...

Bomb Squad members checking a suspected bag found at Bandra Station in Mumbai ...

Bomb Squad members checking a suspected bag found at Bandra Station in Mumbai ...

Red Cross workers walk through an Ebola hit area  in Monrovia, Liberia ...

Red Cross workers walk through an Ebola hit area in Monrovia, Liberia ...

Models take part in awareness campaign 'Save Ganga and Green India' in Bhopal ...

Models take part in awareness campaign 'Save Ganga and Green India' in Bhopal ...

Siddaramiah presenting kit to a beneficiary  during launch of 'Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana' ...

Siddaramiah presenting kit to a beneficiary during launch of 'Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana' ...

Ganesh idol made of dry fruits ahead of Ganesh Chaturthi festival in Mumbai ...

Ganesh idol made of dry fruits ahead of Ganesh Chaturthi festival in Mumbai ...

A young girl viewing Ganesh statues for sale on the eve of the Ganesh Chaturthi in Jaipur ...

A young girl viewing Ganesh statues for sale on the eve of the Ganesh Chaturthi in Jaipur ...

Team owners Sachin Tendulkar and Ranbir Kapoor during the launch of Indian Super League ...

Team owners Sachin Tendulkar and Ranbir Kapoor during the launch of Indian Super League ...

John Abraham, signs a football during the launch of the Indian Super League, in Mumbai ...

John Abraham, signs a football during the launch of the Indian Super League, in Mumbai ...

Founding chairperson Nita Ambani at the launch of the Indian Super League in Mumbai ...

Founding chairperson Nita Ambani at the launch of the Indian Super League in Mumbai ...

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bangalore - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523