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Monday, January 27, 2003

Queen Rania launches an interactive dialogue between Arab and Western Women

Arab and Western Women

(Office of Her Majesty, Press Department - Davos) Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah launched an interactive dialogue between Arab and Western Women urging them to carry forward a spirit of communication and to engage in intercultural exchanges as a vital step towards building trust between each other.

The dialogue, held under the theme Arab and Western Women – Building Trust Together," was organized as part of the 33rd Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) taking place in Davos, Switzerland.

"I suggest that each one of us arranges inter-cultural exchanges between Arab and Western women, … It could be a working dinner like this one. It could be a business club meeting. It could be a congressional or parliamentary hearing… The point is, to really take steps to build trust between us," Queen Rania told Arab and Western women gathered to discuss the active role women can play to promote cultural understanding and trust between the Arab World and the West.

Queen Rania, who has been outspoken on the need for the promotion of cross-cultural understanding and dialogue, stressed that over the long term, mindsets which limit the possibilities for women should be changed.

However, "in the meantime we must not neglect what we can do now" to improve the lives of women at home and around the world, the Queen said.

Queen Rania's participation in the dialogue, is part of her efforts that contribute to improving the situation of women and increasing their participation in the economic and social development of their communities.

"We should remember how much power we have to make a difference in women's lives," Queen Rania said. She added that in order to open the door to a whole new way of thinking, women should ask each other questions and listen carefully to answers. "Let us make a commitment tonight to start listening. We are in this together. We all have a share in a common future. "

As part of her participation in the WEF Meetings with His Majesty King Abdullah, Queen Rania on Monday attended her first meeting as a member of the WEF Foundation Board as the only serving member from the Arab World.

The Board extended an invitation to Queen Rania in September in recognition of her concern for the present state of the world and commitment to engaging in collaborative efforts to meet the challenges.