The PJ Tatler

Afghanistan Gets First Woman Police Chief, Libya Could Get First Female Prime Minister

A couple of milestones to report in countries both fighting Islamists. First, in Afghanistan, the nation’s first woman police chief. Colonel Jamila Bayaz was previously a police officer at the Ministry of Interior’s offices in Kabul, as reported by Tolo News:

“We have designated her in one of the most important police stations of the city, which is Kabul’s first police station,” Kabul Police Chief General Zahir Zahir said. “We don’t seek to place a female officer in a weak station, its not like that, we started this process at this station because women are capable of working like men.”

… “I think my assignment to this post will persuade others to join the police force,” Colonel Jamila said of the prospects of future female police officers.

For the most part, the MoI has been optimistic about the trajectory of women’s role in security forces around the country to start of 2014. Earlier this month, MoI officials said they expected to take on some 10,000 female police recruits this year. “I hope that we see a female Provincial Police Chief in the future, we are working on that and soon you will see it,” MoI spokesman Sediq Sediq said on Tuesday.

And in Libya, a woman with a most classic conservative idol — Margaret Thatcher — eyes the prime minister’s seat, reports the Libya Herald:

Political activist, Amal Al-Taher El-Haj has put her name forward to the General National Congress as a candidate to succeed Prime Minister Ali Zeidan, if he falls victim to a vote of no confidence.

El-Haj, is a 45 year-old Human Resources professional who trained as an English teacher at Tripoli university. Before the Revolution, she worked at the  Libyan-Italian advanced technology helicopter assembly line  in Suq Al-Hamiss. She is now a board director at the Free Communications Organisation

El-Haj said it was Zeidan himself who had inspired her candidacy.

“The main reason I nominated myself “ El-Haj told the Libya Herald, “is that the prime minister said that if anyone feels that he or she is qualified, they should submit their papers to the congress”.

El-Haj’s slogan is “Hope After Pain” — literally, because her first name, Amal, means “hope.”