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CNN Report Highlights Record Number of Women in Knesset

The 29 women serving in Israel’s newly elected Knesset have once again set a record, CNN reported yesterday.

“If you don’t have women around the table, then decisions are made according to what’s convenient for men, not what’s convenient for women,” said Rachel Azaria, a first-term Knesset member with the Kulanu party.

“Every Knesset, one after another, the number of women have been growing,” said Azaria, “and this is part of the way things are moving ahead. And I hope that one day we will be 50%. I think that will happen.” …

The Knesset is 24.2% female, which puts it ahead of the United States, where 19.4% of Congress is female, but behind the United Kingdom’s 29.4%. According to the Inter-Parliamentary Union, Rwanda leads the world in female representation. Rwanda’s Chamber of Deputies is 64% female.

According to the Inter-Parliamentary Union, the percentage of female legislators in Israel is in the same range as Europe.

There are also a record number of Arabs serving in the new Knesset. An Arab judge, Salim Joubran, heads Israel’s elections committee and presided over the most recent national elections in March.

Golda Meir served as Israel’s Prime Minister from 1969 to 1974, and was the third woman to serve as Prime Minister of a country.

Miriam Naor was sworn in to serve as Israel’s chief justice in January of this year.

[Photo:  Miriam Alster / Flash90 ]