“Because of the function of the mass media in the west, Europeans think that Muslim women are illiterate and marginalized and they are not able to make any decision,” the head of the European Union of Shia Women, Rovideh Jobr said.
Nowadays, the Muslim females who live in European communities are facing many challenges such as problems related to employment, education, daily activities and religious affairs. However, the main challenge for a Muslim woman is hijab. The image of a Muslim woman in the West is a dependent person without individual identity who is barred from any social, political, economic and other activities. This view has caused many problems for Muslim women in the west, Lebanese doctor and the head of the European Union of Shia Women, Rovideh Jobr, who lives in Italy, said.
Talking about European Union of Shia Women, Hovideh Jobagh said “This union has the European name because its activities cover all European countries and we hold various conferences and seminars all over the Europe with the subject of Ahl al-Bayt.”
Addressing the goals and the most important activities of this union in the Europe, she said “Correcting the image of the Muslim women in the Western societies is one of the most important goals of this union, because European citizens, influenced by radio, television and the press, which spread various lies about the personality of the Muslim woman, think that a Muslim woman is an illiterate and marginalized person who is unable to make decisions and is not allowed to participate in the social activities. Therefore, Europeans think that Muslim women can not be writers, doctors, etc.”
The role of Muslim women
“I believe that Muslim women are the backbone of the Islamic and non-Islamic communities. They play the most important role in the society because women can enter places and areas that men cannot. This does not mean that the role of men is worthless but women’s circumstances allow them to go to the places that are sometimes considered red line for men,” The head of the European Union of Shia Women said about the role of Muslim women in society.
“If the Muslim women be educated and have firm religious beliefs they can be impressive and discuss with other Muslim women reasonably and help them to develop their Islamic personality,” she added.
The reasons of Muslim women’s problems
The main problem of Muslim women is not Western societies, but is Islamic countries. In the Islamic world some say that women should play important roles in the society and they should achieve their social status but nobody listen to them. First of all, we must convince men that women should enter to the different areas and play active and effective roles in the society.” she outlined.
Banning Islamic veils in the West
Hovideh Jobagh talked about the West, the difficulties and hardships that Muslim women are facing in regard to hijab. “These problems exist in different countries. For instance, wearing hijab is prohibited in government offices and in Italy there were some attempts to enforce this law but Moroccans living in Italy condemned the policy of banning hijab and brought the Italian government to its knees. Moroccan women threatened the Roman government that they would abandon their children in Italy and return to their country if this law was implemented. The government was forced to support them and cancel the law because the number of Moroccan women living in Italy was more than 50 thousands, which every one of them has several children. Therefore, Italy accepted the hijab of Muslim women.” she said.