The 8 women who have led Muslim majority countries

The late Benazir Bhutto

The video has been doing the rounds on social media today. In it the scholar Reza Aslan responds to a rant delivered by the comedian and professional sayer of daft things about vaccines and religion Bill Maher suggesting Islam stands for “circumcision for women, not respecting the rights of women, not respecting the rights of gay people.”

The fact that caught my attention was one Aslan used to illustrate that not all Muslim majority countries treat women like Saudi Arabia does: eight of them (including the largest Indonesia) have been led by women.

Those women were:

Tansu Çiller, elected prime minister of Turkey, 1993-1996

Benazir Bhutto, elected prime minister of Pakistan 1988-1990, 1993-1996

Mame Madior Boye, appointed prime minister of Senegal, 2001-2002.

Megawati Sukarnoputri, elected president of Indonesia, 2001-2004

Khaleda Zia, elected prime minister of Bangladesh, 1991-1996 and 2001-2006

Sheikh Hasina, elected prime minister of Bangladesh 2009-

Roza Otunbayeva, president of Kyrgyzstan, 2010- 2011

Atifete Jahjaga, elected president of Kosovo 2011-

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