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The European Commission issues recommendations to enhance child protection from violence

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Nearly 100 texts up for vote at European Parliament's final plenary session

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71% of EU citizens plan to vote in June elections

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Swiss Universities explore new democratic models with Citizen Council experiment

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Western nations shine spotlight on Sudan's "forgotten crisis"

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Europe Between Two Wars: EU foreign policy in 2023

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European Parliament gives green light to controversial migration pact

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North Sea nations unite to counter Russian threats

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Europe and US must stand together, says Nato chief Stoltenberg

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Foreign ministers convene in Brussels for NATO's 75th anniversary commemoration

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Latest News

The European Commission issues recommendations to enhance child protection from violence

The European Commission issues recommendations to enhance child protection from violence The European Commission issues recommendations to enhance child protection from violence
  In line with the EU Strategy on the Rights of the Child, the European Commission has unveiled a Recommendation aimed at fortifying integrated...
Read More...

Nearly 100 texts up for vote at European Parliament's final plenary session

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This week in Strasbourg, the European Parliament's final plenary session of the ninth legislature will see a total of 89 legislative bills...
Read More...

71% of EU citizens plan to vote in June elections

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The latest Eurobarometer reveals a heightened awareness among EU citizens regarding the significance of the upcoming elections amidst escalating...
Read More...

Swiss Universities explore new democratic models with Citizen Council experiment

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  Switzerland's Universities of Zurich and Geneva are embarking on a pioneering initiative called the 'Citizen Council 2025' project starting...
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Western nations shine spotlight on Sudan's "forgotten crisis"

Western nations shine spotlight on Sudan's "forgotten crisis" Western nations shine spotlight on Sudan's "forgotten crisis"
  France is taking the lead by hosting a conference in Paris on Monday to shed light on the ongoing "forgotten crisis" in Sudan, which...
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Europe Between Two Wars: EU foreign policy in 2023

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  Josep Borrell Fontelles, the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice President of the European Commission,...
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European Parliament gives green light to controversial migration pact

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  On Wednesday, the European Parliament voted in favor of the migration pact, marking a significant milestone in EU migration policy. The...
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North Sea nations unite to counter Russian threats

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  Belgium, along with five other countries, is taking steps to enhance the security of cables, pipelines, and energy installations in the...
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Europe and US must stand together, says Nato chief Stoltenberg

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  Jens Stoltenberg, the secretary-general of Nato, emphasized the mutual reliance between Europe and the US, stating that they are "stronger...
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Foreign ministers convene in Brussels for NATO's 75th anniversary commemoration

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Fiji's recent election in December 2022 marked a milestone in the country's democratic journey, with a coalition government led by Sitiveni Rabuka, a former prime minister, coup

leader, and military commander, promising to get rid of controversial laws that restricted basic freedoms. However, the election also saw a significant decrease in women representatives, with the number of women in the Fiji Parliament dropping from ten out of 51 MPs (19.6%) to six out of 55 (10.9%). This decline in women's political representation has significant implications for Fiji's fragile democracy.

Despite concerted efforts to widen the space available for women in politics, the setback in women's representation has occurred. The women's movement in Fiji has ramped up its public advocacy campaigns to encourage more women to exercise their right to vote and run for office. The Fiji Women's Forum was established in 2012 by a coalition of women's organizations to promote the goal of increased women's political participation. Women are seemingly well-represented in senior party positions across Fiji's political landscape. However, women are still under-represented as parliamentarians, and part of the issue may lie with the electoral system.

Under Fiji's open-list proportional representation (PR) system, electors cast a vote for an individual candidate, and party candidates' personal vote shares are then pooled to determine the number of seats the party has won. In previous elections, a "coattails" effect has been observed, with women (and men) candidates coming into parliament on the back of a strong vote share by the party leader, despite small personal vote shares themselves. In 2022, the major party leaders - Bainimarama and Rabuka - dominated the vote share again, but this did not translate into access for women candidates. With a more fragmented result than previous elections and an increase in the number of parties winning seats in parliament, the opportunities for women appeared to decrease. This highlights the open-list PR system's lack of safeguards for gender diversity.

The decline in women's political representation highlights the enduring power of Fiji's masculinized political system - exemplified by the election itself, with the two major party leaders both male ex-military commanders and instigators of coups. In his inaugural speech, the Speaker of Fiji's Parliament highlighted the male dominance of Fiji's political sphere. There is urgent and important work to be done to increase the number of women standing for, and being elected to, parliament.

The decline in women's political representation suggests a democratic deficit that complicates the story of Fiji's 2022 election. Now that Fiji's coalition government has assumed office and is promising a new era of politics, ensuring that women's rights are fully integrated into the transitional institutions and reforms being implemented is more important than ever. Equal rights for women cannot be an afterthought but rather should be an integral component of these new beginnings. Photo by Fijiisparadise, Wikimedia commons.

deneme