A comparison of Women’s Rights in the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia referenced against the United Nations human rights legislation and selected United Nations’ millennium development goals

Fyfe, Cecilia
Nakhid, Camille
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Master of Arts in Social Sciences
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Auckland University of Technology

This research is a comparison of women‟s rights in the UAE and Saudi Arabia referenced against the United Nations Human Rights Legislation and certain United Nations Millennium Development Goals. The qualitative methodology employed was based on a review of secondary sources. This method, called Documentary Research or Secondary Analysis, is frequently used with other research methods in the Social Sciences. It is derived from the primary documents of formal studies, public documents, autobiographies and diaries, producing themes. This is quick low-cost research from frequently the Internet, and often the only method of accessing information from restricted societies (Sarantakos 1998).

A brief over-view of women‟s rights world-wide is discussed, with a focus on New Zealand. A brief summary and recent history is provided of the UAE and Saudi Arabia. Cultural and social traditions including Islamic traditions in many aspects of daily life, religious tolerance, religious intolerance and punishments that might impact on women‟s rights are discussed. The impact of feminist movements in these two countries is also reviewed. Finally, there is a discussion on the way in which the UN Millennium Development Goals are working towards women‟s rights and empowerment in the face of these cultural and social traditions.

UAE , Saudi Arabia
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