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Qatari writer among nominees for prize

Renowned Qatari writer and psychologist Mouza Al Malki is among the 1,000 women nominated collectively for the Nobel Peace Prize 2005.

By Barbara Bibbo', Correspondent
00:00 July 4, 2005

Renowned Qatari writer and psychologist Mouza Al Malki is among the 1,000 women nominated collectively for the Nobel Peace Prize 2005.

Assistant professor at the University of Qatar, therapist and author of several books on Arab women and children's issues, Mouza is the first Qatari woman to be nominated for the prize.

"It is an honour for me and a recognition not only for my work but also for the country's commitment to supporting women's rights and development," Mouza told Gulf News.

"I believe they selected me among the nominees because of my work to raise awareness about women and children's issues in the Arab world. Or maybe because at the time of our first municipal elections I rallied for women's participation in the political life of the country and got a lot of exposure."

Mouza was selected by the "1000 Women for Nobel Peace Prize 2005" association, an initiative of Ruth-Gaby Vermot-Mangold, a Swiss parliament member who proposed in 2003 that a Nobel Prize should be bestowed upon women with effective contributions to world peace.

The 1,000 women from 153 countries will not claim the $1 million (Dh3.68 million) prize for themselves, but will be use it to set up a fund to support programmes for women.

Thirty-six of the nominees are from Arab countries and eleven come from the Gulf Cooperation Council, including four from Saudi Arabia, three from Kuwait and one each from Bahrain, Oman, Qatar and the UAE.

Mouza is one of the leading Qatari female figures also for her political and social commitments. In 1999 she was one of the six female candidates to the municipal elections, the first poll to be held in the country.

She conducted an intense campaign to promote women's participation in the country's political life.

Mouza has also campaigned for women and children's rights in the Qatari and Arab societies in eight books and several publications and is considered a champion of women's participation in all fields of life.

A social and cultural activist, Mouza was again in the spotlight on March 19, when she and her daughter were injured in a terror attack in a local theatre, where one British citizen was killed.

Mouza was severely injured in the right hand and has undergone since then eight reconstructive surgeries.

"There are intolerant individuals, religious extremists who believe that killing other individuals will earn them the afterlife. I and many other Muslims abhor this kind of thinking."

Her nomination comes also in the framework of her constant appeal to tolerance and dialogue among people of different faiths and nationalities.

Milestones

  • Mouza Al Malki, who is an assistant professor at the University of Qatar, is a renowned Qatari writer and psychologist.
  • In 1999 she was one of the six female candidates to the municipal elections, the first poll to be held in the country.
  • Mouza has also campaigned for women and children's rights in the Qatari and Arab societies and has written eight books and published several articles.
  • She also is a prominent social and cultural activist who has continuously appealed for tolerance and dialogue among people of different faiths and nationalities.