A First For Both Parties: Queen Noor Speaks at Judson University
Queen Noor of Jordan attended Judson University’s sixth annual World Leaders Forum in Elgin, Illinois, on Monday. King Hussein’s widow is the first leader from the Middle East to speak at Judson’s forum.
Her Majesty was the keynote speaker and in her hour-long speech focused on topics including refugees and her work to support humanitarianism. Queen Noor, who is on the board of RefugeesInternational, reminded the auditorium that refugees constitute a third of her country’s population and that at present there is a 1.5 million refugees in the Jordanian Kingdom — a considerable number given its size, Queen Noor said.
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“However, the situation serves to remind everyone of our common humanity. A simple concept that can be found in three of the major religions of the world is treat others as you want to be treated. Only by working together, beyond borders, can that people transcend hopelessness and insecurity,” she said.
Jordan’s Zaatari refugee camp was opened in 2012 to host Syrians fleeing violence in the ongoing Syria’s Civil War, and is now Jordan’s fourth largest city with an estimated 83,000 refugees.
Queen Noor also emphasizes the necessity of empowering women since it helps transcend hopelessness and insecurity. She talked about her work with the Noor Al Hussein Foundation, which helps Jordanian women, and how in her experience “teach a woman to fish and everyone eats,” Queen Noor said.
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“I still aspire and hope and pray that girl power in our region will help us realize the potential and rights of Muslim women everywhere,” said the Queen. She also addressed the growing anti-Islamic rhetoric that is part of the current political discourse in the U.S. “Seventh century Islam granted women political, legal and social rights then unheard of in the West,” she said. “The oppression of women in parts of the Arab world is not because of Islam, but contrary to it.”
She finished her keynote answering the questions from Judson students and general audience members. Judson University President, Gene Crume, presented Queen Noor with a 1950s era Lady Elgin watch as a gift from the University.Filed under Jordan
Tagged Education, Humanitarian Efforts, Queen Noor al-Hussein of Jordan, Refugees, United States of America.