Feminism, as usual, ends at the Muslim line.
Saudi Arabia withdrew its envoy earlier this month over Swedish criticism of the monarchy’s treatment of women and dissidents.So much for the feminist foreign policy. Instead it’s best to stick to fake feminism, like attacking the United States or Israel. No need to mention Muslim abuses of women. That’s just Islamophobic.
Sweden’s government announced a “feminist” foreign policy when it took power in September.
Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstroem criticized policies affecting women, who cannot drive cars and need permission from a male guardian for many decisions.
The response from Arab nations was swift. Wallström’s invitation to address a meeting of the Arab League in Cairo on March 9 was canceled. In protest, Saudi Arabia and the UAE recalled their ambassadors from Sweden. Moreover, Saudi Arabia notified Sweden that it has stopped issuing business visas to Swedish nationals and companies, a move that Sweden fears other Arab states will follow.
Wallström has defended herself from criticism from Arab nations, including the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. The minister contends that her comments of Saudi Arabia’s human rights record was not an attack on Islam.
“We have very many Muslims in Sweden. This government will do everything it can to restore our relationship with the Saudi government,” she said. “We intend to use all our diplomatic tools to ensure that we can restore our bilateral relationship.”
Sweden has apologized for the recent offensive remarks by its foreign minister against the laws of Saudi Arabia and hoped for better relations between the two countries.
In a message to King Salman, Sweden’s Prime Minister Stefan Lofven expressed “deep sorrow and regret over the current crisis in the relations between the two countries” while stressing his government’s keenness to maintain healthy relations between the two countries.