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02 March, 2004

Kinder Kuche Mosque part 2

News today that Emirati women will be leaving the office at 4pm every day, thanks to new legislation designed to help national wives spend more time with their husbands and children. They will also be allowed to retire after ten years with one company.

Quite apart from the fact that this will make local women the dalits of the private sector, will many of them actually relish the chance to spend extra time in domestic drudgery? Given that juvenile deliquency - an increasing problem here as elsewhere - is generally linked to absent fathers, would it not be more effective and progressive to send the men home at teatime?

Women are also told they should have "at least six babies and this should be viewed as a national duty." No wonder they are increasingly choosing to escape to a nappy, brat and bawling-free office.

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