Rabat – US News released a list of 80 worst and best places to be a woman. The Best Countries for Women ranking listed Morocco as the 63, up seven places from the 2018 ranking when Morocco was listed at 69.
Despite the notable change in the ranking, this year’s list shows Morocco nearly at the bottom,behind Mexico (50), India (57), Saudi Arabia (41), and UAE (30).
Tunisia is the 77th on the list. The last on the list is Myanmar, where the Rohingya conflict is ongoing in northern Rakhine State.
US News said that the Best Countries for Women“is a perception-based ranking based on the responses of nearly 9,000 women who filled of surveys for the 2019 Best Countries rankings.”
The ranking takes into account several aspects, including care about human rights, gender equality, income equality, progress, and safety.
Morocco’s government has been active in addressing gender issues in recent years, including sexual harassment in the street. In 2018 the government adopted Law 103-13 on gender-based discrimination. The criminalizes public harassement and all forms of violence including sexual assault.
Female activists, however, found loopholes in the law, questioning its efficiency after the increase of rape andsexual assaults, and the publicization of the incidents.
Activists have been also condemning light sentences given to defendants charged with violence against women, rape, or sexual harassment.
A government-sponsored survey in July showed that 12.4% of Moroccan women faced sexual assaults in public spaces in the past twelve months.
The government has also vowed to improve human rights and gender equality, including laws on inheritance.
Morocco’s efforts were recently acknowledged as advisor to President Donald Trump, Ivanka Trump, extolled Morocco’s strategy in ensuring equality between Moroccan women and men in terms of inheritance law.
On August 19, Ivanka congratulated the“Moroccan government for this important step towards the adoption of inheritance law amendments, and look forward to supporting their full implementation.”
The statement came after Morocco adopted three bills related to communal agricultural land (sulaliyat), which take into account the aspirations of rights holders, including women also known as sulaliayt.