Open Journal Systems
Women’s Organizations Arab World
In late 1996, a women’s organization working in the shantytowns of Cairo unexpectedly discovered that approximately 10% of its target group, or 16,000 women, officially did not exist; these women held neither a birth certificate (BC) nor an identity card (ID). Consequently, they were deprived of many basic services, such as schooling and access to credit, as well as of the rights and duties of citizenship such as voting. They encountered serious problems in claiming their personal rights, such as the pension of a deceased spouse or assets bestowed through inheritance. Moreover, their needs were not taken into account in national policy planning and budgeting.
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