Shazia Z. Rafi
Shazia Z. Rafi is, since 1996, secretary-general of Parliamentarians for Global Action, an association of more than 1,350 individual legislators from 131 national parliaments. PGA programs promote peace, democracy, justice and sustainable development around the world. As a direct implementation of the Beijing Platform of Action, PGA became the first parliamentary organization to appoint a woman as secretary-general and to amend its constitution with a 60:40 gender rule for executive committee elections. Born in Lahore, Pakistan, and a graduate of Bryn Mawr College and the Fletcher School, Tufts University, she writes this essay as her personal commentary, not as a PGA representative.
The author, secretary-general of Parliamentarians for Global Action, explains how pre-election timidity has caused the United States to stymie an international effort to regulate the dangerous arms trade industry. More »
Upon the appointment of Michelle Bachelet to head the UN's promising new women's agency, Shazia Z. Rafi, secretary-general of Parliamentarians for Global Action, explains how an international coalition of women effectively negotiated the UN power process to get us to this point. More »
The Pakhtuns of Afghanistan and across the border in Pakistan haven’t always rejected influences from the West. The author suggests that Alexander the Great’s success in the 4th Century B.C. may hold a key to integrating Afghanistan into the international community—in a way that would help protect and empower women in the region. More »
The author, a Pakistan-born New Yorker, connects our collective sorrow on 9/11 to what terrorism and its aftermath continue to take away. More »