Pakistan’s First Female Foreign Minister


Nine years were enough for Hina Rabbani to grab the reins of Pakistani diplomacy.

On July 20th, Pakistan's first female Foreign Minister was sworn in. The Political inheritance and feudalism in Southern Punjab, pushed Rabbani to enter politics in 2002, when she was 25 years old, by default as she is the daughters of a politician.

She was known for her good relations with former President, General Pervez Musharraf and Prime Minister Shawkat Aziz.

She worked as a financial affairs’ consultant in the government and when Musharraf’s rule ended in 2008, she moved from losers to winners’ ranks, and became a member of the People's Party.

She continued to work as a financial consultant for the new Prime Minister, Yousuf Raza Gilani and then became the first female minister for financial affairs in 2009.

In February 2011, Hina rose to the rank of Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, after the former Pakistani foreign minister resigned, protesting against his country's stance to give diplomatic immunity to U.S. intelligence agent accused of killing Pakistanis.

Hina Rabbani, the youngest woman minister in the history of Pakistan was keen to get along with the army and its chief, General Ashfaq Kayani, and kept her same previous solid relations with the president and the prime minister. In general, she maintained good ties with everyone.

She was not spared of criticism and negative comments after her recent visit to India, where the Indian and Pakistani press described her visit as a fashion show trip; Other Pakistani newspapers labeled her as a Minister of fashion affairs.

The admirers of the youngest female minister in the history of Pakistan said that she has provided a new soft image to the country.

Others believe that Pakistan, after Rabbani’s appointment, may not need a lot of effort to change the global stereotypical image.

In a country, which has been accused of violating women's rights, extremism and strictness, a young woman occupies the highest positions and leads diplomatic and foreign relations.

Is it a step towards the right path for this Muslim nuclear country or the contradictions that cannot be explained?

Original report: Baker Atyani

Adaptation: Sara Sfeir

Voice: Noora Faraj